THE PANAMA CANAL
ENDED JUNE 30
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
Digitized by the Internet Archive
in 2010 with funding from
University of Florida, George A. Smathers Libraries with support from Lyrasis and the Sloan Foundation
THE PANAMA CANAL
ENDED JUNE 30
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
TABLE OF CONTEXTS.
Report of the Governor of The Panama Canal------------------------- 1
Operation and maintenance______________________________________
Terminal construction________________________________________ 4
Locks operation___________________________________________ W
Electrical division___________________________________________ 41
Municipal engineering division-------------------------------- 13
Meteorology and hydrography--------------------------------- 15
Office engineer----------------------------------------------- 19
Marine division---------------------------------- 19
Dredging division____________________________________________ 21
Mechanical division------------------------------------------- 23
Supply department----------------------------------------------- 25
Materials and supplies------------------ 26
Fuel-oil plants_______________________________________________ 2i
Comparative prices of beef, American and native----------- 2S
Mount Hope printing plant----------------------------------- 29
Accounting department------------------------------------------- 29
Executive department-------------------------------------------- 34
Bureau of clubs and playgrounds----------------------------- 35
Division of civil affairs--------------------------------------- 35
Bureau of customs------------------------------------------- 37
Police and tire division--------------------------------------- 3S
Division of schools___________________________________________ 39
Relations with Panama_______________________________________ 40
Health department----------------------------------------------- 44
Division of hospitals----------------------------------------- 45
Ancon Hospital__________________________________________ 45
Board of Health Laboratory-------------------------- 4.~>
Grounds and police__________________________________ 4(5
Corozal Hospital and farm--------------------------- 46
Colon Hospital__________________________________________ 46
Palo Seco Leper Asylum---------------------------------- 46
Santo Tomas Hospital____________________________________ 47
District dispensaries------------------------------------- 47
Quarantine division------------------------------------------ 48
Washington office------------------------------------------------ 4
Report of the engineer of maintenance--------------------------------- 51
Lock operation and maintenance---------------------------------- 52
Water consumption, Gatun Lake----------------------------- 52
Gatun Dam__________________________________________________ 53
Regulating valves____________________________________________ 54
Fender timbers______________________________________________ 54
Towing locomotives------------------------------------------ 54
Backfill and grading_________________________________________ 54
Drains for backfills__________________________________________ 55
Spare parts_________________________________________________ 55
Painting lock gates and valves------------------------------- 55
Pedro Miguel lock________________________________________ 55
Miraflores locks__________________________________________ 57
Gatun locks__________________________________________________ 60
Operating machinery------------------------------------- 60
Emergency dams------------------------------------- 61
Painting and inspection of valves, culverts, etc-------- 62
Pacific locks_____________________________________________________ 62
Electrical division_______________________________________________ 65
Organization and personnel----------------------------------- 66
Office and design____________________________________________ 66
Report on electrical power____________________________________ 67
Substations and transmission lines---------------------------- 69
Distribution lines_____________________________________________ 69
Armature repairs, etc_________________________________________ 70
Railway signal system--------------------------------------- 70
Tableresponsible signal interruptions for fiscal year--------- 71
Telephones and telegraph-------------------------------------- 72
Fire-alarm system------------------------------------------- 72
Building division------------------------------------------------ 73
Building operations------------------------------ 73
Tablecomparative unit costs of buildings---------------- 76
Balboa sanitary and dental building------------------ 79
Pedro Miguel dispensary--------------------------------- 79
Balboa electrical storehouse------------------------------- 79
Perico Island barracks----------------------------------- 79
Fort De Lesseps coast defense headquartersstorehouse
and barracks building----------------------------------- 80
Fort Grant band barracks-------------------------------- 80
Corozal ordnance magazine------------------------------- 80
Ancon Hospital__________________________________________ 81
Report of the engineer of maintenanceContinued. Page.
Municipal engineering division----------------------------------- 83
Panama water office_________________________________________ 85
Report of water-collection office, Colon-----------1------------ 85
Status of capital-cost account for municipal improvements in
Panama and Colon_________________________________________ 8G
New construction_____________________________________________ 87
Work for other divisions_____________________________________ 87
Work performed in connection with operation of water purifica-
tion plants________________________________________________ 88
Section of meteorology and hydrography-------------------------- 89
Tables accompanying meteorological section, list of------------ 93
Tables accompanying hydrographical section, list of------------ 101
Section of surveys_______________________________________________ 107
Building lots________________________________________________ 108
Gatun dam__________________________________________________ 108
Bench marks________________________________________________ 109
Precise triaugulation_________________________________________ 109
Canal Zone boundary lines____________________________________ 109
Joint Land Commission---------------------------------------- 110
Supply department___________________________________________ 110
Cristobal coaling plant_______________________________________ 110
SurveyPanama, Ancon, Balboa______________________________ 111
General surveys----------------------------------------------- 111
Section of office engineer----------------------------------------- 112
Terminal construction work-------------------------4------------ 113
Atlantic docks----------------------------------------------- 113
Pier No. 7_______________________________________________ 114
Fill and track yard in rear of the Cristobal fire station----- 115
Extension of the Cristobal mole__________________________ 115
Approach fill for Pier No. 6 and fill for track yard-------- 116
Boat landing and launch house between Piers Nos. 7 and 8_ 116
Concrete blocks for the east breakwater------------------- 117
Improvements in roadways and new custom line fence------ 117
Pier No. 6______________________________________________ 117
Pacific terminals_____________________________________________ 119
Dry Dock No. 1_________________________________________ 119
Coaling plants___________________________________________ 120
East breakwater, Colon______________________________________ 120
West breakwater____________________________________________ 122
Report of the marine superintendent---------------------------------- 123
Admeasurement of vessels and application of tolls------------------ 124
Summary of traffic through the canal during fiscal year and
since its opening to commercial traffic----------------------- 125
Number of vessels of various nationalities passing through the
Steamboat-Inspection Service------------------------------------ 128
Report of the resident engineer, dredging division_____________________ 120
Division organization-------------------------------------------- 129
Output of all dredges, with total and unit costs___________ 131
All yardage actually handled, with total and unit costs_____ 131
Yardage removed, first district, Pedro Miguel lock to the
Yardage removed, first district, Gaillard Cut, Pedro Miguel
lock to Gamboa Dike___________________________________ 132
Yardage removed, second district_________________________ 132
Yardage remaining to be removed from the canal prism____ 133
Number of days dredges were retired for repairs and re-
Subaqueous rock excavation__________________________________ 133
First district, Gamboa Dike to Panama Bay______________ 133
Tablerock removed by dredges---------------------- 134
Second district__________________________________________ 134
Dredging operations_________________________________________ 134
First district____________________________________________ 134
Distribution of material removed from Gaillard Cut_ 135
Excavation, by dredges--------------------------- 135
Second district__________________________________________ 136
Miscellaneous dredging_______________________________________ 136
Pacific terminals---------------------------------------- 136
Atlantic terminals_______________________________________ 137
Sand and gravel production-------------------------------------- 137
Diversions and drainage------------------------------------------ 138
Slide inspection and reports-------------------------------------- 138
Mindi dikes and groins------------------------------------------- 138
Water hyacinths------------------------------------------------ 138
Report of the superintendent, mechanical division---------------------- 141
Results accomplished--------------------------------------------- 141
Reduction of total costs______________________________________ 141
Reduction of overhead charges------------------------------- 142
Concentration of work---------------------------------------- 142
Increased volume of outside work for individuals and companies. 142
Active prosecution of all work and increasing facilities--------- 143
Reduction of overtime and night work------------------------- 143
Principal work performed---------------------------------------- 144
General interest------------------------------------------------- 145
Needs for coming fiscal year-------------------------------------- 145
Tables accompanying report, list of------------------------------- 146
Report of the chief quartermaster, supply division-------------- 155
Zone sanitation--------------------------------------------------- 157
Material and supplies-------------------------------------------- 158
Operation of stores--------------------------------------------- 158
Surplus obsolete material, equipment and scrap---------------- 159
Fuel-oil plants_______________________________________________ 159
Gasoline storage--------------------------------------------- 159
Mount Hope printing plant--------------------------------------- 161
Commissary operations------------------------------------------ 161
Report of the general manager-------------------------------- 162
Costa Rica purchases------------------------------------ 102
Sausage factory------------------------------------------ 162
Ice-cream plant------------------------------------------ 162
Hog farm_______________________________________________ 163
Chicken farm____________________________________________ 163
Sales to steamships------------------------------------------ 166
Force actually at work on June 27, 1917______________________ 168
Force reports, by months, fiscal years 1916 and 1917------------ 169
High and low force records, December, 1906, to June 30, 1917, by
fiscal years________________________________________________ 169
Occupants of Panama Canal and Panama Railroad quarters,
June 30, 1917______________________________________________ 170
Applications for married quarters on file June 30, 1917-------- 170
Animals in corrals, June 30, 1917____________________________ 170
Value of material received during fiscal year on requisition---- 171
Statement showing sales of material, supplies, and equipment
heretofore purchased or acquired for the construction of The
Panama Canal, made by authority of the governor without
advertisement, and on which time did not permit securing
approval of the Secretary of War-------------------------- 172
Houses, apartments, and occupants, by districts, of gold and
silver quarters, as of June 30, 1917__________________________ 172
Operation of Hotel Tivoli____________________________________ 173
Summary of operations of line hotels-------------------------- 173
Summary of operations of laborers' messes____________________ 173
Material on hand at end of year and total of all issues_________ 174
Reixrt of the chief quartermaster, supply divisionContinued.
Fuel oil handled_____________________________________________ 174
Fuel-oil storage facilities_____________________________________ 174
American scrap operations------------------------------------ 175
Obsolete and surplus material________________________________ 17a
Comparative statement of output of manufacturing plants, com-
missary division___________________________________________ 175
Statement showing quantities of certain staple articles imported
during the fiscal year as compared with previous years------- 176
Statement of comparative selling prices for June 30, 1917, as
against June 30, 1916______________________________________ 176
Statement of the more important articles purchased by the prod-
ucts' buyer in Costa Rica during fiscal year------------------ 177
Report of the auditor________________________________________________ 179
Accounting to the Treasury for collections------------------------- 180
Claims for refund of tolls---------------------------------------- 180
Claims for damages to vessels passing through the locks----------- 181
Examination of pay rolls----------------------------------------- 1S1
Canal appropriations-------------------------------------------- 181
Exchange of property with Panama Railroad______________________ 183
Public works, Panama and Colon--------------------------------- 1S3
Construction of canal-------------------------------------------- 184
Manufacturing plants-------------------------------------------- 186
Operation and maintenance--------------------------------------- 186
Overhead expenses----------------------------------------------- 187
Business operations---------------------------------------------- 1S7
Canal Zone accounts_____________________________________________ 188
Clubhouse accounts---------------------------------------------- 18S
Claims for injuries and deaths------------------------------------ 1SS
Coupon books--------------------------------------------------- 189
Inspection of accounts-------------------------------------------- 190
Time inspection__________________________________________________ 190
Freight claims___________________________________________________ 190
Bonds of employees---------------------------------------------- 190
Storehouse accounts--------------------------------------------- 191
Panama Railroad------------------------------------------------ 191
Tables accompanying report, list of------------------------------- 193
Report of the executive secretary_____________________________________ 255
Bureau of statistics______________________________________________ 256
Bureau of clubs and playgrounds_________________________________ 256
Division of civil affairs------------------------------------------- 258
Bureau of posts--------------------------------------------- 258
Bureau of customs___________________________________________ 261
Report of the executive secretaryContinued.
Division of civil affairsContinued. Page.
Shipping commissioner_______________________________________ 262
Administration of estates____________________________________ 263
Licenses and taxes------------------------------------------- 264
Police and tire division___________________________________________ 264
Police section________________________________________________ 264
Fire section_________________________________________________ 267
Division of schools_______________________________________________ 267
The courts______________________________________________________ 268
Special attorney and district attorney___________________________ 2(ii
United States marshal for the Canal Zone____________________ 269
Relations with Panama__________________________________________ 269
Receipts and expenditures of clubhouses _____------------- 272
Postal service_______________________________________________ 272
Receipts and disbursements------------------------------ 272
Total cash transactions of Canal Zone postal system for
fiscal' year_____________________________________________ 273
Letters and parcels registered, by offices, during fiscal year. 273
Number of insured and C. O. D. parcel-post parcels and reg-
istered articles delivered, by offices, during fiscal year____ 273
Number of mail parcels on which duty has been paid to the
Government of Panama, and the amount of duty as shown
by receipts on file, by offices, during fiscal year----------- 273
Statement of vessels entered and cleared and of seamen shipped
and discharged at Balboa and Cristobal, fiscal year---------- 274
Number of estates received and settled and amount of funds
handled during fiscal year__________________________________ 274
Police section________________________________________________ 274
Police force as on June 30, 1917--------------------------- 274
Distribution of police force by stations and substations_____ 275
Number of arrests, by fiscal years, made on Canal Zone
since organization_____________________________________ 275
Number of arrests, by months, made during fiscal year------ 27.1
Disposition of persons arrested___________________________ 270
Number of prisoners in custody in common jails at the close
of each month during the fiscal year--------------------- 276
Value of labor performed by common jail prisoners con-
fined during fiscal year_________________________________ 27;
Animals impounded and lees collected during fiscal year---- 27<
House-to-house canvass of the population of the Canal Zone
taken between June 10 and 30, 1917, by the police and
fire division____________________________________________ 277
Warden section______________________________________________ 279
Convicts received at penitentiary during fiscal year_________ 279
Convicts discharged from penitentiary during fiscal year____ 280
Crimes committed by convicts confined in penitentiary on
June 30, 1917, and their aggregate sentences_____________ 280
Nationality of the convicts confined in the penitentiary on
June 30, 1917_________________________________________ 280
Sentences of convicts confined in penitentiary on June 30.
1917 ..............__________________________________ 281
Report of the executive secretaryContinued.
Warden sectionContinued. Page.
Value of labor performed by convicts employed on public im-
provements (Empire-Gamboa Road) and value of labor of
convicts assigned to inside labor at the penitentiary during
fiscal year_____________________________________________ 281
Cost of subsisting, guarding, and clothing convicts confined
in the penitentiary during fiscal year____________________ 281
Convicts and common-jail prisoners deported during fiscal
Coroner section______________________________________________ 282
Deaths, by months, investigated by coroner during fiscal year_ 282
Causes of deaths investigated by coroner during fiscal year__ 282
Fire section_________________________________________________ 2S2
Fire personnel as on June 30, 1917________________________ 282
Distribution of fire personnel, by stations, June 30, 1917____ 282
Statement of damage resulting from fires during fiscal year_ 2S3
Statement of property involved in fires during fiscal year___ 2S3
School section_______________________________________________ 283
Monthly enrollment and average daily attendance__________ 283
Report of annual physical examinations of children of white
grade schools during October, 1916_________!____________ 284
Statement showing number of pupils in Canal Zone schools
in March, 1917, who attended schools in the United States
and other countries before entering Canal Zone schools,
and number of pupils who never attended other than
Canal Zone schools____________________________________ 284
Epitome of more important statistics for the years ended June
30, 1914 to 1917, inclusive______________________________ 285
Number of summons, writs, citations, subpoenas, etc., served by
the United States marshal for the Canal Zone during fiscal
Financial transactions in office___________________________ 286
Report of the district attorney---------------------------------------- 287
Criminal prosecutions during fiscal year___________________________ 289
Report of the special attorney---------------------------------------- 291
Panama Railroad Company matters------------------------------- 297
Panama Railroad cases settled during fiscal year_______________ 300
District court, division of Cristobal----------------------- 300
Magistrate's court, Cristobal division---------------------- 300
District court of the Canal Zone, Balboa division_________ 300
Panama Railroad cases pending at end of fiscal year----------- 301
District court of the Canal Zone, division of Cristobal----- 301
Magistrate's court, division of Cristobal------------------- 302
District court, division of Balboa------------------------- 302
TABLE OF CONTENTS. XI
Report of the chief health officer------------------------------------- 303
General remarks________________________________________________ 303
Vital statistics__________________________________________________ 305
Effects of season_____________________________________________ 306
Effects of race_______________________________________________ 306
Canal Zone__________________________________________________ 306
Panama City______________ .-JL------------ 307
Aucon Hospital---------------- 308
Permanent buildings_____________________________________ 308
Board of health laboratory-------------------------------- 309
Corozal Hospital________________________________________ 312
Farm department---------------------------------------- 313
Surgical clinic___________________________________________ 313
Medical clinic___________________________________________ 314
Eye and ear clinic_______________________________________ 314
X-ray clinic_____________________________________________ 314
Steward's department_____________----------------------- 314
Grounds and police______________________________________ 314
Colon Hospital________________------------------------------ 315
Palo Seco Leper Asylum______________________________________ 315
Santo Tomas Hospital_______________________________________ 316
District dispensaries_________________________________________ 316
Medical storehouse___________________________________________ 316
Canal Zone__________________________________________________ 317
Panama City____________--------------------------------- 318
General sanitation_______________________________________ 319
Quarantine division______________________________________________ 323
Tables accompanying report, list of------------------------------- 325
Report of general purchasing officer and chief of the Washington office 361
Acts of Congress and Executive orders relating to The Panama Canal and
to the Canal Zone index-------------------------------------------- 367
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
[Report of the Governor.]
1. Chart showing organization of The Panama Canal, June 30, 1917.
[Report of the engineer of maintenance.]
2. Transmission system. Load curves for week ending June 3<>, 1917, as com-
pared to same period in 1916.
3. Transmission system. Causes and dales of power interruptions.
4. Transmission system. Location and dates of insulator failures.
5. Gatun hyroelectric station. From west side of spillway. Removal of old
wall preparatory to building arch over tailrace. June 25, 1917.
6. Balboa. New quarters. Looking north. July, 1917.
7. Balboa schoolhouse. June, 1917.
S. Fort Grant. Field officers' quarters. June, 1917.
9. Fort Grant. Company barracks. June, 1917.
10. Balboa. New concrete restaurant. June. 1917.
11. Road from Mount Hope to Margarita Point. June, 1917.
12. Gatun Lake watershed. Yields, storage, and lossesmassed curves. Year
1916, and dry season 1917.
13. Chagres River drainage basin. Alhajuela average monthly discharges.
14. Operating uses of Gatun Lake water supply. Year 1916, and dry season
15. Gatun Lake watershed. Total yield massed, maximum, average, current,
and minimum years, period 1911-1916, inclusive.
16. Gatun Lake watershed. Total yield for Gatun Lake, year 191(5, and dry
17. Chagres River drainage basin. Alhajuela discharge mass curves.
18. Chagres River drainage basin. Curves of discharge duration. Fifteen-year
period 1902-1916, inclusive.
19. Cristobal terminal pier No. 7. Placing c*oucrete in side walls. July 8. 1916.
20. Cristobal terminal pier No. 7. (Cylinders in foreground, foundation for
launch house.) February 24, 1917.
21. Cristobal coaling station. March 19, 1917.
22. Balboa coaling station. Unloading S. S. Kronberg. March 17. 1917.
[Report of the resident engineer, dredging division.]
23. Topography East and West Culebra and Cucaracha slides.
24. Typical cross sections. Culebra slides.
25. Gaillard Cut. East bank slides. Looking north from west bank, showing
dredges at work. January. 1917.
26. Gaillard Cut. East bank slides seen from west bank, showing blasting at
foot of Gold Hill. January, 1917.
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
27. Gaillard Cut. Looking south from east bank. June, 1917.
28. Gaillard Cut. East and west bank slides. Looking south. June, 1917.
[Report of the superintendent, mechanical division.]
29. Charts showing classes of work and source of revenue.
39. Balboa shops. Gross overhead expense percentage compared with total
direct labor charges.
31. Balboa Dry Dock No. 1. From Sosa Hill. December, 1916.
32. Pacific terminals showing mechanical shops, dry dock, and coaling station.
[Report of the chief quartermaster.]
33. Yam field. Chilibre plantation. June, 1917.
34. Yam plants. New Culebra. South end of field. Planted June 1, 1917.
35. Sweet potato field just planted. Limon plantation. June, 1917.
36. Frijoles truck farm. June, 1917.
37. Frijoles truck farm. June, 1917.
38. Frijoles truck farm, showing a two-year-old Avocado tree in the foreground.
39. Cocoanut palms. South end Venado plantation. June, 1917.
40. Cocoanut palms. North end Venado plantation. June, 1917.
41. Four-year-old trees. Venado plantation. June, 1917.
42. Cluster of mangoes. Venado plantation. June, 1917.
43. Papaya plants. Bracho plantation. June, 1917.
44. Drying trays. Las Cascadas Cacao plantation. June, 1917.
45. Pole beans and green peppers. New Culebra truck farm. June, 1917.
46. New Culebra chicken farm. First section of building just being completed.
47. Mindi chicken farm. June, 1917.
48. Mindi chicken farm. June, 1917.
49. Mandingo Valley, typical of the Mandingo farm. Looking toward Gamboa
from Mandingo Hill. Pasture below road is one and one-half years' old,
and the extent of the guinea'is evidenced by the blurred effect caused by
the heavy seed tassels. June, 1917.
50. Guinea grass at Monte Lirio. This is three months' growth from seed on
clean-burned heavy clearing. June, 1917.
51. Cattle industry. Cattle on Atlantic pastures. June, 1917.
52. Cattle industry. Cattle on Atlantic pastures. June, 1917.
[Report of the chief health officer.]
53. New Ancon Hospital. February, 1917.
54. New Ancon Hospital. The main stairway. June. 1917.
55. New Ancon Hospital. The laboratory. July, 1917.
56. New Ancon Hospital. Section B. June, 1917.
57. New Ancon Hospital. Admitting office and dispensary. July, 1917.
GOVERNOR OF THE PANAMA CANAL.
The Panama Canal,
Office of the Governor,
Balboa Heights, Canal Zone, August 23,1917.
Sir: I have the honor to submit the annual report covering the
construction, operation, maintenance, and sanitation of The Panama
Canal for the fiscal year ended June 30, 1917.
For the first six months the organization and the personnel in the
principal supervisory positions remained as they existed at the close
of the preceding fiscal year. On January 10, 1917, the resignation of
Maj. Gen. George W. Goethals, United States Army, as Governor,
was accepted by the President, and on the same date the undersigned
was appointed to fill the vacancy. The position of engineer of
maintenance, thus vacated, was filled by the appointment of Lieut.
Col. Jay J. Morrow, Corps of Engineers, United States Army, who
had been assigned to duty on the canal with that idea in view, as
explained in the annual report of last year. The engineer of mainte-
nance is next to the Governor in the canal organization, and by Exec-
utive order is designated as the official to assume the responsibilities
and duties of the Governor during the latter's absence or disability.
The work of the canal on the Isthmus is divided into five principal
departments, namely, operation and maintenance, supply, accounting,
executive, and health. The courts are attached to the Governors
office for the purposes of administration only, as is also the district
attorney, except that the latter is designated as the advisor to the
Governor on legal questions. The special attorney represents the
interests of the United States Government before the Joint Com-
mission in claims arising from the taking of land for the purposes of
construction, operation, maintenance, or defense of the canal. The
office of the canal in "Washington is charged under the Governor with
the purchase of materials and supplies, the appointment in the States
of employees of the canal on the Isthmus, and with such adminis-
trative matters as are more conveniently handled in "Washington than
on the Isthmus.
The department of operation and maintenance includes all matters
relating to the actual use of the canal as a waterway, the mainte-
nance, operation, and repair of its physical structures and auxiliaries,
and all construction work incident to the completion and maintenance
of the canal. The Governor assumes direct control of this depart-
ment, assisted by the engineer of maintenance in all construction work
and other engineering features, and by the marine superintendent in
all matters relating to the navigation of the canal, including the
lighthouse establishment. For the present, and until the slides in
the Culebra section have been sufficiently removed to place dredging
work on a purely maintenance basis, the dredging division is under
the direct supervision of the Governor, with the resident engineer at
its head. It will ultimately be assigned, as part of the maintenance
organization, to the engineer of maintenance. The mechanical divi-
sion, which operates the mechanical shops and dry docks, with a
naval constructor at its head, is a branch of the department of opera-
tion and maintenance, and continues under the Governor's direct
The supply department is charged with the accumulation and dis-
tribution of materials and supplies for the canal and railroad, the
operation of commissaries, hotels and messes, the recruitment and
distribution of common labor, the maintenance of buildings and
grounds, the assignment of quarters, and the sale of provisions and
other supplies, except coal and water, to ships. It also operates
corrals and vehicular transportation.
The accounting department is responsible for the correct recording
of financial transactions of the canal and railroad, the administra-
tive auditing of vouchers covering the receipt and disbursement of
funds preliminary to the final audit by the Auditor for the War
Department, cost keeping of the canal and railroad, the checking of
timekeeping, the preparation of estimates for appropriations and the
allotment of appropriations to the various departments and divisions,
and the examination of claims arising under the injury compensation
act. The collector and paymaster are attached to the accounting
The executive department, administered by the Governor through
the executive secretary, includes the division of civil affairs, sub-
divided into the bureau of customs, the administration of estates,
and the postal service; the police and fire division; the division of
schools, and the bureau of clubs and playgrounds. The executive
secretary has general supervision of the clerical forces of the canal,
except that of the accounting department, and is responsible for the
organizations that keep the general records of the canal and rail-
road, including all correspondence and matters relating to personnel,
property accountability, the compiling of statistics, and the keeping
of time of all emploj^ees of the canal and railroad. He acts as the
Governor's representative in matters affecting the relations between
the Canal Zone Government and the Eepublic of Panama, and in
such matters he communicates officially with the secretary of foreign
affairs of the Republic.
The department of health is charged with all sanitary matters
within the Canal Zone and the cities of Panama and Colon; the
operation of the hospitals and dispensaries, the enforcement of
quarantine regulations, and the compilation of vital statistics in the
Canal Zone and in the cities of Panama and Colon.
Other than the engineer of maintenance, the heads of depart-
ments and divisions reporting to the Governor during the year were
Marine division, Commander H. I. Cone, United States Navy,
Dredging division, Mr. W. G. Comber, resident engineer.
Building division, Mr. George M. Wells, resident engineer, to the
date of his resignation, February 2, 1917, when the work of the
building division was placed under the supervision of the engineer
of maintenance, with Mr. Hartley Rowe as resident engineer.
Mechanical division, Naval Constructor D. C. Nutting, United
States Navy, superintendent, until his relief from duty with the
canal on December 15, 1916, when he was succeeded by Naval Con-
structor R. D. Gatewood, United States Navy.
Supply department, Maj. William R. Grove, Quartermaster De-
partment, United States Army, chief quartermaster.
Accounting department, Mr. H. A. A. Smith, auditor; Mr. T. L.
Clear, collector; and Mr. J. H. McLean, paymaster.
Executive department, Mr. C. A. Mcllvaine, executive secretary.
Health department, Lieut. Col. D. C. Howard, Medical Corps,
United States Army, chief health officer.
The Washington office of the canal was in the charge of Maj.
Earl I. Brown, Corps of Engineers, United States Army, as chief
of office and general purchasing officer.
Mr. Charles R. Williams continued as district attorney throughout
Judge Frank Feuille, as special attorney, represented the Govern-
ment before the Land Commission and advised the Governor in
several matters of administration. He was also counsel of the
Plate No. 1, showing the organization of The Panama Canal June
30, 1917, accompanies this report.
OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE.
At the close of the preceding fiscal year the principal construc-
tion work remaining uncompleted included the coaling plants at
Cristobal and Balboa; the commercial Pier, No. 7, at Cristobal, con-
structed from funds of the Panama Railroad; Pier No. 6 at Cristobal,
which was authorized by Congress and for which appropriation had
been made in part; the east breakwater at the Atlantic entrance of
the canal; and various buildings and quarters for the canal and for
the Army stationed on the Canal Zone for the defense of the canal.
At the Balboa dry dock there remained some minor items of work,
including the finishing of the floor and the blocking system, the
delivery and installation of a locomotive crane, the grading and
paving of the area around the dock, installation of capstans and
bollards, and general cleaning-up work. There remained also a
small amount of dredging Work in the canal prism, which, in a few
places, had never been excavated to full width and depth.
The dry dock, coaling plants, harbor structures, and the break-
water had been in the charge of Admiral H. H. Rousseau, United
States Navy, as engineer of terminal construction, and, with the
exception of Pier No. 6 at Cristobal, were almost entirely completed
under his supervision. Upon his relief from duty with the canal
in July, 1916, the work in progress was transferred to the engineer
of maintenance, under whose direction it remained throughout the
year, or until completed.
The dry dock at Balboa (fully described in former reports) was
completed and transferred to the mechanical division for service on
May 15, 1916. A statement of the operation of the dry dock will be
found in the report of the superintendent of the mechanical division,
The Cristobal coaling plant was placed in service on September 20,
1916, its operation being assigned to the Panama Railroad under
Mr. T. W. McFarlane, superintendent of the plant. The Balboa
coaling plant was completed on December 1, 1916, but, due to the
necessity for dredging alongside the unloading and reloading berths,
and delay in the delivery of digging buckets, tests of the plant pre-
liminary to final acceptance were not completed until after the close
of the fiscal year. Detailed descriptions and cost of construction of
the coaling plants were contained in the report for 1916.
Except for certain defects in the design and construction of the
unloader towers and machinery, affecting the continuous operation
at or near capacity, which defects are being remedied by the con-
tractors under guarantee bond, the plants have been entirely satis-
At the Cristobal plant 474,378 tons of coal were received from
September 20,1916. the date of taking over the plant for operation, to
July 31, 1917, inclusive. During the same period 449,531 tons were
delivered from the plant, of which 343,423 tons were sold to ships.
The best single performance of the reloaders of the Cristobal plant
was on December 16, 1916, when the steamship Cumberland took 510
tons of bunker coal in 31 minutes. The unloading towers on Decem-
ber 30 and 31, 1916, discharged into the storage pile 12,000 tons of
coal from the collier Achilles in 2H hours actual working time. On
July 2 and 3, 1917, they discharged from the collier Ulysses 12,000
tons in 21 hours actual working time. The average cost of operation
of the plant per ton of coal delivered to a ship at the reloader
wharf is $0.90. This figure includes operations of both the unloader
and the reloader towers, and the machinery for delivery into storage
and removal therefrom.
At the beginning of the fiscal year the substructure of Pier No. 7 at
Cristobal had been completed, and the floor was complete except for
the laying of paving brick, which was 20 per cent complete. There
remained to be erected 5 per cent of the structural-steel shed and
80 per cent of the concrete Work in the walls and columns. The pier
was completed on November 1, 1916, and was immediately put into
service. Pier No. 7 was constructed from funds of the Panama Rail-
The sundry civil act of July 1, 1916. authorized the construction of
an additional pier, numbered 6, at Cristobal, at a limit of cost of
$1,500,000, and made an initial appropriation of $S00,000 for the
beginning of the work. This pier is to be of the same general dimen-
sions as Pier No. 7 and of the same type of construction. Due to the
increased depth to rock at the site of Pier No. 6, the total length of
cylinders in the foundation will be 12 per cent greater than in Pier
No. 7. After some preliminary dredging work in the removal of
243,198 cubic yards of silt from the site of the pier, construction of the
trestle and false work for the driving of steel cylinders was begun in
October and completed in February. One thousand one hundred and
thirty-five linear feet of trestle and false work were driven, at a unit
cost of $36.23 per linear foot. The necessary power and motor lines
and construction tracks laid on the trestle increased this cost to
$41.84 per linear foot. The steel for the cylinders was furnished
under contract with the Riter-Conley Company, of Pittsburg, Pa.,
at a unit price of $0.0357 per pound, the material to be cut to dimen-
sions and delivered fiat. Deliveries began in December, 1916, and
were completed in April, 1917. The rolling and assembling of ma-
terial into cylindrical shape was performed by the mechanical divi-
sion at Cristobal shops at a unit cost of $4,206 per linear foot of
cylinder. Driving of the cylinders was begun on November 29, 1916,
and at the end of the fiscal year was 65 per cent complete, with a
total of 15,855 linear feet of cylinders in place. The removal of ma-
terials from the interior of the driven cylinders was begun December
15th, and was 63 per cent complete on June 30, 1917, 10,503 cubic
yards of material having been removed. The filling of the cylinders
with concrete was begun on January 25, 1917, and at the close of the
fiscal year 10,987 cubic yards of concrete had been placed. In order
to avoid the difficulties experienced in the construction of Pier No. 7
and of the Cristobal coaling plant, due to the collapse of the steel
cylinders on account of the heavy external pressures at extreme
depths, the thickness of the steel sheets used in the sections at and
below depths of 70 feet was prescribed at one-half inch, instead of
three-eighths inch. No trouble with collapsing cylinders has been ex-
perienced in Pier No. 6. Economy was effected by Mr. T. B. Monniche,
the engineer in charge of the design and construction of the pier, by
using three derrick barges, available from the breakwater work, in
setting, driving, excavating and concreting the cylinders. This float-
ing equipment made it possible for one longitudinal trestle to suffice in-
stead of four, as were necessary on Pier No. 7. Plans and specifications
for the structural steel work on the floor system were prepared dur-
ing the first half of the fiscal year. Bids were advertised for during
January and February and were opened on February 12, 1917. The
lowest price offered was $0,052 per pound, an increase of more than
150 per cent over the corresponding costs of the steel in Pier No. 7,
amounting to an increase of $365,000 in the cost of floor construction.
These facts led to a change in design of the floor system, using rein-
forced concrete instead of structural steel, with an estimated saving
of $253,000, but with a remaining increase of $112,000 over the cost
of the floor system of Pier No. 7.
Improvements were made in the layout of the roads in the ap-
proaches to the docks at Cristobal, increasing the facilities for han-
dling the traffic to and from the docks. An iron fence was erected,
preventing access to the system of docks from the shore except
through gates, in order to protect the cargoes stored on the docks
against loss by theft and to prevent smuggling of goods into Pana-
To afford protection to Pier No. 6, both during and after construc-
tion, against the high seas which, in stormy weather, pass through the
interval between the two breakwaters, it was necessary to extend the
Cristobal mole a length of about 810 feet. Work on the trestle for
this extension was begun on June 10, 1916, and was continued inter-
mittently, keeping pace with the fill, until completed in February,
1917. The fill, containing 119,414 cubic yards of soft rock excavated
from the borrow pit at Mount Hope, was begun in August, 1916,
and completed in February, 1917. For the protection of the sea slope
of the mole extension 26,038 cubic yards of hard rock from Sosa
Hill were placed as armor. The mole serves the double purpose of
a breakwater and of a fill on which to lay the railroad approach and
yard tracks for the service of the pier.
A boat landing and launch house for the use of small boats in
service at the Atlantic entrance was authorized to be constructed at
the head of the slip between Piers Nos. 7 and 8. The substructure
was completed on May 27, 1917, when work was suspended, due to
delay in receipt of steel for the floor of the landing.
At the east breakwater there were placed by derrick barges from
July to October, inclusive, 10,055 (81,156 cubic yards) concrete
blocks as armor, and the harbor slope was completed by depositing
from scows 46,350 cubic yards of material excavated by a ladder
dredge working at the Cristobal coaling station. The breakwater
was completed on November 30, including the removal of the tracks
from the trestle and the salvaging of the trestle timbers. To provide
for repairs to the breakwaters that may be made necessary from the
action of storms, 1,143 concrete blocks, containing a total of 10,237
cubic yards, were manufactured and placed in storage at the Coco
Solo yard. In August, September, and October, 1916, 612 concrete
blocks, containing 9,667 cubic yards, were placed on the west break-
water to complete repairs due to damage done by the northers"
The total cost of the east breakwater up to the end of the preceding
fiscal year was $3,365,743.56. The charges for work done during
1917 make the total cost of the completed breakwater $3,797,560.65.
For further details of the terminal construction work, see report of
the engineer of maintenance, Appendix A.
The operations of this division cover the construction of all build-
ings for the canal and railroad, barracks and quarters for the Army,
and repairs of canal and railroad buildings in cases where the esti-
mated cost of repairs undertaken in any instance exceeds $50. Dur-
ing the year work was in progress on the construction of 307 build-
ings for the canal, 3 for the railroad, and 64 for the Army. The
principal buildings for the canal were the administration building,
dispensary, laboratory, and an additional ward in the new Ancon
Hospital group; 3 new concrete restaurants at Cristobal, Balboa, and
Ancon; 5 new concrete school buildings at Cristobal, Gatun, Pedro
Miguel, Ancon, and Balboa; separate storehouses of concrete for elec-
trical supplies, paint, lumber, and general supplies; the concrete
grand stand at the baseball and athletic grounds at Balboa; 4 con-
crete 4-family quarters at Balboa; 174 family quarters of timber con-
struction at Ancon-Balboa : 44 family quarters of timber construction
at Pedro Miguel; and 32 12-family sets of quarters of timber con-
struction for silver employees. For the Panama Railroad there were
constructed a concrete freight and baggage building at the Cristobal
docks, and an electric-charging station at Balboa. The buildings for
the Army included additional barracks and quarters at Fort Grant,
Fort Sherman, Fort Randolph; artillery headquarters and barracks
and band quarters at Fort De Lesseps; and barracks, quarters, shops,
and special buildings for the Ordnance Department at the Ordnance
Depot at Corozal, all provided for in appropriations by Congress and
allotted to the Governor of The Panama Canal for expenditure. De-
tails accompanying the report of the building division, Appendix A,
show the types, the dates of beginning the work, the dates of com-
pletion, and the cost to June 8, 1917, of all the buildings in course
of construction during the year.
The five school buildings are all of similar construction. They
have exterior walls and, in most instances, interior walls of reinforced
concrete, the remaining walls being of hollowT concrete blocks, cement
plastered; and reinforced concrete floor slabs and stairs throughout.
The finished floors of classrooms, teachers' rooms, libraries, offices,
and assembly rooms are of select narrow yellow pine, on wood sleep-
ers buried in concrete; finished floors in entrance halls, interior cor-
ridors, and libraries are 6-irich square vitreous red tile; stairs have
patented safety treads and reinforced-concrete newels and hand rails
and wrought-iron square balusters; roofs are red tile, supported on
wood frame; the general classrooms in all five schools are 21 feet by
32 feet 6 inches, accommodating 40 pupils, and each room is lighted
by windows so placed as to admit light over the pupil's left shoulder
while at his desk. All the schools are fully equipped with modern
toilet fixtures, and each classroom with bookcase and slate black-
The Ancon Hospital dispensary, laboratory, and ward group, com-
pleted during the year, were described in detail in the report for last
vear. The administration building, the construction of which was
begun on March 20, 1917, was 25 per cent completed at the end of the
year. This building, the central unit of the entire hospital plant,
occupies a commanding position in the group overlooking Panama
City and the bay. It is three stories and a basement in height, in
plan the shape of the letter U, 151 feet 2 inches by 110 feet 3 inches
over all dimensions, and comprises the various clinics, administrative
offices and operating suites. Space in the basement has been pro-
vided for the drug dispensary, drug manufacturing department, store
rooms, and a linen sorting room, with a laundry chute connecting it
with the other floors of the building. On the first floor accommoda-
tions are provided for the eye and ear and medical clinics, X-ray
department, and waiting rooms for the public. On the second floor
will be located the offices for the superintendent and clerks, doctors'
bedrooms for the officers of the day, library, and file room. The
entire third floor is devoted to the operating suite and surgical clinic.
The building will be constructed of reinfoired-concrete bearing walls
and reinforced-concrete floor slabs, with Spanish red-tile roof sup-
ported by a wooden frame of yellow-pine timbers.
The kitchen and mess for the hospital plant is directly in rear of
the administration building, and is centrally located with reference
to the different wardrooms. It will be constructed of reinforced
concrete beams and columns, with reinforced concrete floor slabs, and
cement block exterior curtain walls and interior partitions. The roof
will be of Spanish red tile on timber supports, uniform with the
other buildings of the hospital group. The main kitchen, storeroom
and refrigerator room, diet kitchen, steward's office, and dining room
for the kitchen help and silver convalescent patients have been pro-
vided on the first floor. To facilitate the handling of food to bed
patients in the various wards and private rooms an elevator with
a capacity of six food carts will be installed to run between the
kitchen and basement floor to the level of the covered passageways
which lead to the various buildings of the hospital group. Two
large dining rooms are provided, one for the doctors and nurses and
the other for the gold male convalescent patients, on the second floor.
Further details of these buildings are contained in the report of the
building division, Appendix A.
The restaurants constructed at Cristobal, Balboa, and Ancon are
the first of a permanent type that have been built on the Canal Zone,
and are an improvement in design, appearance, and convenience over
the so-called line hotels of the construction period. For reasons
of cleanliness, the kitchens, dining rooms, and refrigerating rooms
have white vitreous enamel tile bases. The inside faces of the walls
are painted white enamel, the food counters are marble, the steam
tables Monel metal. The buildings all have reinforced concrete bear-
ing walls, columns and floor systems and partitions, and nonbearing
walls of concrete block. Steel trusses and purlins support the wood
rafters and red tile roofs. They are one-story structures with square
columns spaced 8 feet 10 inches in the clear, with copper screening
between, taking the place of outside walls, thus providing an open
pavillion effect for the dining room and such parts of the kitchen
and other service rooms that are not necessarily inclosed with solid
walls. Protection from the sun and rain is provided for the open
spaces by an extra projection of the roof eaves.
In addition to the work above referred to, the building division has
constructed a number of small buildings on work requests from other
divisions in the canal and Panama Railroad, and temporary struc-
tures for troops in the vicinity of the various canal structures which
they are guarding. Additions and alterations were made to build-
ings 6, 7, and 9, Balboa shops, alterations to Balboa and Cristobal
mess houses, and Young Mens' Christian Association buildings were
constructed at Paraiso and Cristobal. Details showing the total and
unit cost of the buildings completed during the year are contained in
the report of the building division, Appendix A.
At Gatun there were 1,741 commercial and 160 noncommercial
lockages, and 1,909 commercial vessels were passed through during
the year; at Pedro Miguel there were 1,797 commercial, 271 noncom-
mercial lockages, and 1,938 commercial vessels were passed; at Mira-
flores there were 1,792 commercial, 233 noncommercial lockages, and
1,930 commercial vessels were passed. The ships passed exceeded the
number of lockages because it is the practice to lock two ships through
simultaneously when they arrive at the locks within a short time
interval and their combined length does not exceed 720 feet. There
were no delays due to machinery failures in any of the lock opera-
tions and there were no cases of serious damage to ships while in
the locks. The most frequent minor damage is the breaking of the
ships' chocks, due in almost every instance to their defective construc-
tion and insufficient strength to take the strain of the tow line.
The maintenance work at the locks has consisted in the systematic
inspection and overhauling of all the operating machinery and tow-
ing machines, minor changes in small details as improvements were
developed by use, painting of gates and other exposed steel surfaces,
repairs to the floating caisson, the renewal of timber fenders on the
wing and approach wall, and the application of bitumastic solution
and enamel to the valves and submerged portions of the lock gates.
At Gatun experimental use was made of a patented machine for ap-
plying a protective coating of zinc on steel and other metallic sub-
merged surfaces, with the idea of preventing the voltaic action that
causes corrosion. One of the rising stem valves, with the roller train
rods, guide bearings, the valve stem, and all bolt heads and nuts
were thoroughly cleaned and sand blasted, and a coating of zinc ap-
plied. A section of the downstream side of one of the gates below
sea level was similarly treated. Since the work was done the lock
has not been unwatered, and no information is as yet available as to
the success of the experiment. The expedient of using greenheart
lumber to replace the babbitt metal valve seats and lignum-vitae
side seals in place of machinery steel at Miraflores, as described in
last year's report, has been only partially successful in checking the
corrosive action experienced. The bitumastic enamel was successful
as a protective coating for the valve surfaces, so far as can be judged
during the short time that has elapsed since it was applied. Main-
tenance work has been done by the Bitumastic Enamels Company
under their guaranty to maintain the coating applied by them to the
lock gates at Gatun and Miraflores. At Gatun the surface so re-
touched on the gates of the upper and middle chambers has amounted
to about one-third of the original surface covered. This work was
evidently made necessary by the failure of the material to adhere to
the steel surface of the gates, and this was probably due to lack of
care in cleaning and drying the surfaces before applying the bi-
tumastic. Where the bitumastic has adhered to the steel it has af-
forded satisfactory protection both against rust and on account of
the insulating property of the material against corrosion due to
voltaic action. At Pedro Miguel bitumastic solution and enamel pur-
chased from the Navy Department has been applied to the gates by
the lock forces. The cost of the work, including the materials, was
much less than the contractor's price, but the maintenance of the pro-
tective coating for five years will have to be considered before an
actual comparison of costs can be made.
The unwatering of lock chambers for purposes of inspection, paint-
ing and repairs of valves, and the painting of gates has caused one
side or the other of the double locks to be closed to traffic for periods,
as follows: Gatun, 188 days; Pedro Miguel, 119 days; and Miraflore:.
124 days. A few items of construction work were completed at the
locks; among them is a dock landing for small boats at the northeast
wing wall of the Gatun locks; mess buildings for gold and silver
employees, repair pits for towing locomotives, and grading of back-
fills at the Pacific locks
The work at the Gatun spillway consisted entirely of painting the
spillway gates and bridge and the usual upkeep of the operating
machinery. The installation of heavy steel plates on the baffle piers
to prevent erosion was delayed, due to nonarrival of material, until
too late to complete the work during the dry season. This work must
of necessity be done in the dry season on account of the frequent
opening of the spillway gates during the rainy season. At the Gatun
dam a fill was made along the crest for a length of 550 feet west of
the locks, in order to restore the section to full height. Earth exca-
vated at the site of the addition to the hydroelectric station at the
spillway was used in making the fill; the amount placed was 15,000
This division remained in the charge of Maj. William H. Rose,
United States Army, until his relief from duty with the canal on
June 1, 1917, when Maj. T. H. Dillon, United States Army, was ap-
pointed to succeed him. The hydroelectric generating station at
Gatun, the reserve steam-driven electric-generating plant at Mira-
flores, the substations, transmission lines, and power-distributing sys-
tems throughout the canal were all satisfactorily maintained and
operated. This division also continued to install, maintain, and op-
erate the municipal and house lighting systems, the telephones and
telegraphs, fire alarm, and the railway block signals and interlocking
plants. The average monthly consumption of electricity generated
for all purposes was 3,645,325 K. W. H., at a cost, including deprecia-
tion, of $0.0073 per K. W. H. consumed for power purposes, and
$0.0134 for lighting purposes, the latter figure including maintenance
of interior house Aviring and lamp renewals.
The new water wheels, referred to in last year's report, were in-
stalled at the Gatun spillway, resulting in an increased capacity from
6,000 K. W. to 8,640 K. W., at 80 per cent power factor. This work
was completed December 19,1916, at a cost of $16,377.91. Funds were
provided for the installation of an additional unit and the extension
of the station building to accommodate this unit and provide space
for the future installation of two more units. This work was begun
on January 1, 1917, and at the end of the year the concrete draft
tubes and the foundations of the building extension were completed
and the erection of penstocks 10 per cent completed. A contract w7as
made on November 22, 1916, for the construction of the new generator
unit, to be delivered on December 2, 1917. This generator will be a
General Electric 66,000-volt, 3-phase, 25-cycle, 4,500 K. W., at 80 per
cent power factor, mounted on a vertical shaft direct connected to
6,750 H. P. turbine furnished by the Pelton Waterwheel Company.
With the changes heretofore made in the three water wrheels origi-
nally installed, this additional unit will increase the capacity of the
Gatun station to 13,140 K.W., and the ultimate capacity provided for
when the two additional units are installed will be 22,140 K. W.
This will take care of about twice the present load and will make
available a reserve of about 50 per cent above any increases in load
now in contemplation.
The work of installing in the Mirafiores station the units from the
dismantled steam-power plant at Gatun was completed on December
14, 1916. This installation increased the capacity of the Mirafiores
station to 7,200 K. W. The steady growth of the electric load on
the canal has made necessary the intermittent operation of the Mira-
fiores plant to carry the peak loads pending the increase in capacity
of the Gatun hydroelectric station. As a reserve the Mirafiores
plant provides power for the Pacific locks and the lighting and
power systems at the Pacific terminus of the canal at times of break-
down in the transmission lines or other interruptions of power from
the Gatun plant. The principal additional loads carried during
1917 were: Balboa coaling plant, 1,267 K. W.; Balboa dry dock,
6,010 K. W.; air-compressor plant at Balboa, 1,600 K. W.; cold stor-
age and ice plant, Balboa, 450 K. W.; and additional lights requir-
ing 1,300 K. W. in the various municipal buildings, schools, and
Army and canal quarters. To provide an adequate reserve at the
Mirafiores plant it will be necessary to increase its capacity so as
to maintain it at about two-thirds the capacity of the Gatun plant.
The necessity for increased electrical output has led to a consid-
eration of the water consumption from Gatun Lake by the Gatun
hydroelectric station and its effect on the level of Gatun Lake during
the four months' dry reason. The dry season of 1917 was abnormal
in length and in deficiency of rainfall, and as the traffic through the
canal was above the average and the consumption at the hydroelec-
tric station increased, an opportunity was afforded to observe the
fall in lake level under conditions of large consumption and small
inflow of water. The results are discussed in the part of this report
relating to meteorology and hydrography. It may be stated here,
however, that it will be necessary, with a pronounced increase in
canal traffic, to operate the hydroelectric station at less than its ulti-
mate capacity during dry seasons and to suppl}T the deficiency in
electric power by the operation of the Mirafiores plant during the
There was a large increase in telephone service during the year.
On June 30, 1916, 1,878 telephones were in use, and on June 30,
1917, 2,154. The average number of telephone calls per day was
21,042. To care for the increase in telephone business plans are
developing for a new exchange at Cristobal and the installation of
additional cable for trans-isthmian service.
The construction work of the division included the laying of 185,-
000 feet of underground cable and the installation of lighting sys-
tems in 86 Army buildings, 45 Panama Railroad buildings, and 991
apartments for canal employees.
For further details attention is invited to Appendix A.
Municipal Engineering Division.
This division continued under the immediate charge of Mr. D. E.
Wright, as municipal engineer, reporting to the engineer of mainte-
nance. The work of the division consisted of the maintenance and
repair of municipal improvements in the Canal Zone and in the cities
of Panama and Colon, the care and maintenance of the water reser-
voirs, and the maintenance and operation of the pumping stations and
water filtration plants. In addition to the maintenance work the
division performed all road and municipal construction work for all
new town sites for the canal, and similar work in the Army posts,
Fort Grant, Fort Sherman, Fort Eandolph, and Fort De Lesseps.
The reservoirs and pumping plant on the west side of the canal,
for the service of the military posts at Las Cascadas, Empire, and
Culebra, were maintained and operated. At the Mount Hope pump-
ing station the average number of gallons pumped a month was
119.169,500; at Agua Clara, 27,084,750; at Gamboa, 284,661,833; at
Mirafiores, 30,162,500; at Balboa, 205,171,250; and at Paraiso, 6,220,-
166. The average division cost for water delivered in the various
districts per 1,000 gallons during the year was as follows: Cristobal,
$0.06; Gatun, $0.11; Gamboa, $0.34; Paraiso, $0.07; Pedro Miguel,
$0.07; Mirafiores, $0.06; and Balboa-Ancon, $0.06. These figures
include the costs of filtration and purification at the filtration plants
at Mount Hope and at Mirafiores. At Cristobal 47,257,000 gallons
and at Balboa 14,558,000 gallons were sold to ships during the year.
The municipal maintenance work performed in the cities of
Panama and Colon, at a total cost of $152,289.89, was repaid to the
municipal division from water rentals, in accordance with the terms
of our agreement with Panama. In the city of Panama the average
daily consumption of water for the year was 2,398,250 gallons, and in
Colon 1,626,695 gallons.
The principal items of construction by the municipal division for
The Panama Canal consisted of the grading of grounds and the
installation of water and sewer lines, streets, and sidewalks in the
new addition to the town at Balboa, making fill and grading grounds
and constructing water and sewer systems, streets, and sidewalks in
the new town of Cristobal, and the construction of connecting roads
in outlying districts. For those purposes the expenditures were
$488,948.81. For the Army, $530,912.70 were expended in grading,
installing water and sewer systems, and constructing streets and side-
walks at Fort Grant, Fort Sherman, and Fort Eandolph, the con-
struction of a concrete road from Fort Eandolph to Mount Hope,
from Fort Grant to Balboa, and the construction of roads, streets,
water and sewer lines for the new Ordnance Depot at Corozal, and
repairs to roads and streets in the camps at Culebra, Empire, Las
Cascadas, and Quarry Heights. For the Panama Eailroad there
were constructed the G Street storm sewer in Colon, the railroad's
share of the Curundu Eiver storm sewer, the roads at the Cristobal
piers, water lines for cattle pastures, roads to a number of the plan-
tations, and improvements to pavements in the vicinity of the passen-
ger station of Panama City. The cost of the work performed at the
expense of the railroad was $126,849.40. Work done for outsiders,
for which deposits were made to cover the cost, included the making
of private water taps, the construction of short sections of road, and
repairs to the tramway company's right of way in Panama City and
to the streets in Panama and Colon that were opened up for the
installation of the gas company's mains. Work was done at the
Balboa terminals, consisting mainly of the rat proofing of Piers Nos.
15 and 16, construction of retaining walls for Pier No. 18, riprapping
and grouting of banks in rear of Docks Nos. 17 and 19, the extension
of oil lines for the delivery of oil at the coal-handling plant, the ex-
tension of water lines on the piers, and the grading and asphalting of
areas at the Balboa shops. This work was performed at a cost of
$88,662, chargeable to the appropriations for the terminal work.
During the year the division constructed a total of 155,137 square
yards of concrete streets and roads, at a cost of $1.73 to $2.40 per
square yard; 59,916 square yards of asphaltic streets and roads,
with macadam and Telford foundations, at a cost of $2.03 per square
yard; and 12,046 square yards of macadam roads, with Tarvia
binder, at a cost of $1.52 per square yard. Experience with water-
bound macadam roads has proved that the prevalence of heavy rains
during the rainy season and the lack of water in the dry season in-
creases the maintenance of this type of road so as to make its fur-
ther construction undesirable. The records show that the cost of
maintenance for nine years of water-bound macadam roads, added
to the original cost of construction, amounts to twice the cost of
construction of a concrete road.
The further investigations of the physiologist, Mr. George C.
Bunker, in charge of the operation of the water filtration plants,
have developed additional data with reference to the treatment of
tropical waters for drinking purposes. The report for last year
included an elaborate statement by Mr. Bunker on the subject. His
further investigations have resulted in scientific facts of technical
interest and importance, which it is hoped to publish in separate
For further details of the operations of the municipal engineering
division, see report of the municipal engineer, Appendix A.
Meteorology and Hydrography.
This division continued in the charge of Mr. F. D. Willson, chief
hydrographer. All of the meteorological and hydrographic obser-
vation stations enumerated in last year's report were maintained
and operated. An automatic wind-velocity instrument was installed
at the signal station on Sosa Hill and an anemometer and rain gauge
at Cape Mala, at which point a lighthouse was established in the
fiscal year 1916. The meteorological office at Colon was moved from
the old Panama Railroad offices to the new Atlantic terminal build-
ing; records were begun at the new location on March 1, 1917. The
temporary water gauge registers at Juan Mina, Vigia, Frijoles, and
Trinidad were replaced by permanent structures of steel and con-
crete during the dry season of 1917. Arrangements were made with
the United States Weather Bureau at Washington to furnish mete-
orological reports at 8 a. m. and 8 p. m. daily between June 1 and
December 1. Weather forecasts are received daily for the Caribbean
Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic Ocean, and special hurri-
cane reports are received during the hurricane season. This infor-
mation is supplied all shipping using the canal. Ships are also given
the opportunity to compare their barometers and chronometers with
standard instruments maintained by the canal. Standard time is ob-
tained daily by wireless from Washington.
Meteorological statistics ire collected by calendar years to comply
with the general custom. For the calendar year 1916 the rainfall
was above normal over the Pacific half of the Canal Zone, and
below normal over the Atlantic half. The average precipitation
over the Pacific section was 83.6 inches, 96.01 inches over the Cen-
tral section, and 105.29 inches over the Atlantic section. The dry
season rainfall for 1916 was 11 per cent of the total for the year in
the Pacific section, 10 per cent in the Central section, and 12 per
cent in the Atlantic section. March was the driest month and Octo-
ber and November the months of heaviest rainfall. The maximum
rainfall during 24 hours was 8.17 inches at Brazos Brook on No-
vember 16 and 17. For the first six months of the calendar year of
1917 the rainfall was below normal throughout the Canal Zone.
The average air temperature for 1916 was 1 F. above normal on
the Atlantic coast, and 1 F. below normal on the Pacific coast. At
Balboa Heights the maximum recorded temperature for the year was
92 F. on April 5, and the minimum was 62 F. on February 5. At
Colon the maximum was 90 F. on May 11, and the minimum 72
F. on May 27. The lowest temperature of record was 58 F., at Alha-
juela on March 25, 1917. The previous low-temperature record was
59 F. at Bas Obispo on February 9, 1907.
The wind movements over the Canal Zone for 1916 wTere below the
average. The maximum wind velocity recorded on the Isthmus
remains at 59 miles per hour, at Balboa Heights on July 10, 1909.
At Colon the maximum is 46 miles per hour, recorded on April 14,
There were no fogs on either coast during 1916, but numerous fogs
were reported at interior stations. As usual, the fogs were lifted by
8.30 a. m.
Thirty-two seismic tremors were recorded at the Balboa Heights
station during the fiscal year ended June 30, 1917. Twenty-five had
their origin at distances of from 70 to 760 miles, and the remainder
were of distant origin, ranging from 1,045 to 4,950 miles. The
intensities varied from I to IV on the Rossi-Forel seale of I to X.
No damage resulted to any of the canal structures from any of these
The yield of the Gatun Lake watershed for the dry season of 1917
(January to April, inclusive) was 38 per cent below the seven years'
dry-season average. The yield was 1,348 cubic feet per second, while
the average is 2,076 cubic feet per second. The dry season of 1912,
during which the yield was 892 cubic feet per second, is the only one
since the lake was formed that gave a smaller yield. The run-off of
the Chagres River above Alhajuela, which is the principal source of
water, was 49 per cent below the average of dry seasons for a period
of 16 years. During the dry season of 1917 the maximum lake eleva-
tion was at 86.70 on January 2, and the minimum 83.14 on April 27,
the fall being equivalent to a loss of 16.14 billion cubic feet. The
consumption of water from the various causes during the dry season
of 1917 was as follows, in units of a million cubic feet:
Gatun spillway gate operations_____________________________________ 93. 94
Gatun spillway leakage------------------------------------------ 44. 79
Gatun locks operation____________________________________________ 2, 757. 63
Gatun locks leakage___________---------------------------------- 61.48
Gatun hydroelectric plant---------------------------------------- 12, 910. 57
Pedro Miguel lock operation_______________________________________ 2, 210. 29
Pedro Miguel lock leakage________________________________________ 51. 74
Maintaining Mirafiores Lake through Pedro Miguel lock_____________ 317. 79
Pumping at Gaillard Cut_________________________________________ 13. 24
Brazos Brook Reservoir__________________________________________ 97. 93
Pumping at Gamboa______________________________________________ 146. 05
Evaporation_______________________________________________________ 9, 988. 01
It thus appears that the principal consumption of water from the
lake was at the hydroelectric plant at Gatun. If this station had not
been in service Gatun Lake would have passed through the dry season
with a loss of level of 0.7 of a foot, while supplying water for all of
the through lockages made, which averaged 166 per month during
the dry season. The enlarged hydroelectric station, when developed
to its ultimate capacity, will consume about 150 per cent more water
than the existing station, or about 7,700 million cubic feet per month
as against the present monthly average of 3,080 million cubic feet.
Between elevations +87.00, the adopted maximum height of the
lake at the beginning of the dry season, and +80.00, the minimum
height which will give a depth of 40 feet throughout the canal, there
is a storage capacity of 31,890 million cubic feet of water. Assuming
the inflow and all losses except those for lockages and power the same
as during the last dry season, the lake would have provided suffi-
cient water for an average of 40 through lockages a day, provided
no water had been consumed for the generation of power. If the
enlarged hydroelectric station had been constantly operated at full
capacity during the dry season, the lake would have provided suffi-
cient water for about 156 lockages per month without drawing the
lake below the +80.00 level. This is slightly below the present traffic.
There is no doubt of the ability of the lake during the wet season
to provide an abundance of water for operating the power plant to
its ultimate capacity, and, at the same time, an increased use of water
for lockage purposes up to the capacity of the canal. It will always
be possible, therefore, at the end of the wet season, to leave the lake
at its maximum height of +87.00. During dry seasons, depending
upon their intensity and length, the hydroelectric plant may be
operated at partial capacity only, the deficiency in power for the
time being to be supplied by the operation of the auxiliary steam
generating plant at Mirafiores. So far as may now be judged, the
use of the Mirafiores steam plant as a reserve during dry seasons is
more economical than would be the creation of additional water
power at Alhajuela, and in any event the Mirafiores plant must be
maintained at all times as an emergency reserve.
An average of 36 lockages per day is about the practicable capacity
of the canal, as maintenance and repair of operating machinery will
necessitate the occasional closing of one flight at each of the locks.
As it is to be presumed that in making 36 lockages a day many oppor-
tunities will arise for passing two ships simultaneously in a lock-
age, the capacity for passing ships will be correspondingly greater.
For further details attention is invited to Appendix A.
The general surveying work remained under the direction of Mr.
O. E. Malsbury, assistant engineer. During the year corner and
grade stakes were set in Colon for 181 building lots, and 19 block
monuments were set. The restricted area line, governing the loca-
tion of cantinas in Panaman territory 25 meters from the Zone line,
was surveyed and established by 16 monuments. Lots were surveyed
and staked in Cristobal for the United Fruit Company and for the
French Steamship Company. At Balboa a lot was staked out for the
International Petroleum Company, and in Panama Yard lot No. 30
was surveyed and staked out for the Panama Railroad Company.
Monthly observations were continued of the settlement hubs on
Gatun dam, showing normal settlement throughout the year. Grade
stakes were set out for the fill made on the east valley, south toe, of
Gatun dam. Twenty-two precise level bench marks were cleared
and repaired, and two were transferred on account of construc-
tion work. The stations established on Gold, Zion, and Con-
tractors Hills, at the request of the Slide Commission, were read
periodically during the year, showing no movement. Ten trian-
gulation stations were established along the Panama Railroad, and
17 other stations were also established. Sixty-seven Zone trian-
gulation stations were cleared and repaired, and trochas opened
up to permit visability. Surveys were made and maps prepared,
showing boundary lines, areas and improvements on various estates
for which claims were pending before the Joint Land Commission.
Numerous surveys were made for the supply department in connec-
tion with the pastures and plantations operated by that department.
The survey of the Panama-Ancon-Balboa district, which has for its
scope the location of all improved public and private buildings and
Panama Railroad property lines in the city of Panama, the location
of buildings, streets, manholes, fire hydrants, water lines, and rail-
road tracks within the limits of the towns of Ancon and Balboa was
about 75 per cent completed. The finished map will be in two sec-
tions, on a scale of 1-2000.
A survey was made of the new boundary line of the Colon Radio
Naval Reserve and of the quarantine reservations at Colon. Numer-
ous minor surveys, observations, and calculations were made for the
various departments and divisions of the canal.
For further details attention is invited to Appendix A.
This office continued in the charge of Mr. C. J. Embree, who has
charge of the drafting forces under the engineer of maintenance, and
has handled miscellaneous drafting and designing work as required
from time to time by other departments and divisions of the canal.
For further details concerning the work done under the engineer
of maintenance, attention is invited to Appendix A.
The traffic through the canal showed an increase over that of pre-
vious years. A total of 1,876 vessels of all classes passed through the
canal from July 1, 1916, to June 30, 1917, inclusive. Of these, 905
passed from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and 971 from the Pacific to
the Atlantic. In the fiscal year 1915, 1,088 vessel ^ passed through the
canal, and in 1916, 787. The total number of vessels transiting the
canal since it opened for commercial traffic in August, 1914, is 3,751.
The total net tonnage, canal measurement, for the several years is as
follows: 1915, 3,849,035; 1916, 2,479,762; and 1917, 6,009,358. The
cargo tonnage transported was, for 1915, 4,969,792; 1916, 3,140,046;
and 1917, 7,229,255. Details showing further totals of traffic are
contained in the report of the marine superintendent, Appendix B.
The traffic for the year yielded a revenue of $5,631,781.66 from
tolls. The rules for levying tolls have thus far remained unchanged.
It will be remembered that under present law and regulation tolls
are based on canal tonnage, at the rate of $1.20 per net ton, except
when this product exceeds the registered net tonnage, United States
rules, at a rate of $1.25 per ton, in which case the lesser amount is
collected. The confusion, lack of uniformity, and loss in revenue to
the canal resulting from the present arrangement have been fully
discussed in previous reports, and remedial legislation is now pend-
ing in Congress.
In this connection, attention is invited to the fact that the revenues
from tolls for the past fiscal year would have been $6,668,247.32 if
canal rules alone had governed, which is $1,036,465.66 more than the
amount actually collected.
All local matters relating to transactions with the canal by ships
using its facilities, as well as the actual transit through the canal,
are handled by the marine superintendent through the captains of
the ports, the idea being to reduce as much as possible the number of
individuals with whom ships must deal, and thus simplify the busi-
ness routine for the ships' officers and agents. To further this pur-
pose, terminal office buildings have been constructed on convenient
sites at each terminal port, with provision of office space for customs
officers, representatives of the collector, and receiving and forward-
ing agents of the Panama Railroad, all of whom are concerned with
some part of the business between ships and the canal. The terminal
building at Balboa was occupied on July 10, 1916, and that at
Cristobal on November 14, 1916.
The channel lights and buoys, harbor and range lights, the Tabo-
guilla, Bona Island, and Punta Mala lighthouses were operated and
maintained throughout the year, except that for obvious reasons the
harbor lights have been extinguished since the declaration of war.
On July 2,1916, an accident to the mechanism of the gas accumulator
of the Punta Mala lighthouse resulted in igniting about 10,000 cubic
feet of dissolved acetylene gas. The intense heat destroyed the tank
house, but fortunately did no damage to the legs of the lighthouse
tower. A temporary light was installed on July 5, and permanent
conditions were restored on September 9.
Two pilot boats, 40 feet long, with a speed of 18 knots, and two
85-foot steel supply boats, all constructed in the canal shops, and a
sailing launch, transferred from the Navy Department, were acquired
by the division during the year.
The board of local inspectors, under the supervision of the marine
superintendent, investigated all cases of accident, from whatever
cause, resulting in serious damage to shipping in Canal Zone waters
and whenever possible fixed responsibility and estimated the cost of
repairs. The board made the usual semiannual inspections of all
floating plants obtaining to the canal and railroad in Canal Zone
waters. The details of the board's operations are described in its
report, Appendix B.
The dredging equipment in operation during the year comprised
the following: The seagoing suction dredge Culebra; 18-inch
pipe-line dredge No. 4 until its permanent retirement from
service, on December 8, 1916; the 20-inch pipe-line dredges num-
bers 82, 83, 84, 85, and 86; the 15-yard dipper dredges Cascadas,
Gamboa, and Paraiso; the ladder dredge Corozal; the French ladder
dredges numbers 1 and 5 to October 30, when they were retired from
service; and the French ladder dredge Marmot. The drill barge
Teredo No. 2 was operated from time to time at Culebra and
Cucaracha slides, at the dry-dock cofferdam, Balboa, and at the
Pacific entrance. The rock breaker Vulcan was engaged in breaking
rock in the uncompleted section of the canal prism in the vicinity of
Gamboa Dike and between Stations 1445 and 1460 and was retired
from service on October 12, 1916. The floating hydraulic graders
numbers 1, 2, and 3 were engaged for the most part in sluicing, ditch-
ing, and grading operations at the Culebra slides. The floating com-
pressor plant was operated to May, 1917, supplying air to the drills
at work on the Cucaracha and Culebra slides.
This equipment excavated and removed during the year 15,445,885
cubic yards of material, of which 7,315,487 cubic yards were earth
and 8,130,398 cubic yards were rock. The average cost of dredging
per cubic yard of all classes of material was $0.27782. Included in
the cost, but not in the yardage just stated, is a total of 648,519 cubic
yards of material that was handled twice by the dredges, which,
when taken into consideration, reduces the actual unit cost of dredg-
ing to $0.25662 per cubic yard.
In maintenance work there were removed by dredges in Cristobal
Harbor and in the canal from the Atlantic entrance to Gatun locks
183,904 cubic yards; between Gamboa and Pedro Miguel locks,
8,149,634 cubic yards; in Mirafiores Lake, 448^385 cubic yards; and
between Mirafiores lock and the Pacific entrance, 978,426 cubic yards.
The year's dredging chargeable to construction, which includes all
the excavation in the canal prism at locations where the full widths
and depths have not been once obtained is as follows: Gaillard Cut,
183,904 cubic yards; Between Gamboa and Pedro Miguel lock,
246,998 cubic yards; and Pacific entrance, 221.138 cubic yards. At
the end of the year there remained 1,409,140 cubic yards of original
excavation to be done within the limits of the canal prism.
In addition to the work in the canal prism, there was miscellaneous
dredging done in the terminal harbors in connection with the con-
struction of the terminal structures and their approaches from the
canal and in reclaiming swamp areas by hydraulic fill for the health
department. The amount excavated in this miscellaneous work is
included in the total output of the year of all the dredges above
reported, as are also the 268,897 cubic yards of sand and gravel
excavated at the gravel beds in the Chagres River for use in concrete
construction throughout the canal work.
Report has heretofore been made of the dikes and groins built on
the south shore of Limon Bay, west of the canal, for the prevention
of bank erosion and the consequent silting of the canal in the vicinity.
Further experience confirms the efficiency of these constructions.
Work of destroying water hyacinths was continued with the same
plant and methods as heretofore. Two hundred forty-seven thou-
sand five hundred and fifty-seven square yards of hyacinths were
killed by arsenic spraying and 385,700 young plants were pulled and
destroyed. There is no menace to canal navigation from these
pests, but due vigilance is exercised to prevent their getting a start.
An important part of the work of the dredging division has again
been the removal of material from the sliding areas in the Culebra
section of Gaillard Cut. Aside from the fact that during the year
there was an easily navigable channel available, w7ith but two inter-
ruptions of a total of 10 days, as compared with the entire closure
of the canal from October, 1915, to April 15, 1916, perhaps the best
indication of the improved condition is that the removal of 6,834,072
cubic yards from the Culebra slides during the year has resulted in
a prism of full depth and the full width of 300 feet throughout,
with increased widths of from 200 to 500 feet at the points of former
maximum activity. During the year ended June 30, 1916, 11,210,141
cubic yards were removed from the same section of the canal. In
July, 1916, 1,073,675 cubic yards were removed, and in June, 1917,
341,568 cubic yards. The West Culebra slide has been quiescent
throughout the year, the volume between the peripheral break and
the canal having settled to such an extent as to give indications of
having reached a condition of stability. The East Culebra slide
is still in motion, with occasional periods of increased activity and
intervals of comparative rest. Each active period results in a
settlement of the entire mass within the limiting break and a hori-
zontal motion toward the center of the bowl-shaped area. Since the
dredges have succeeded in excavating the east bank several hundred
feet outside of the limits of the canal prism, recent movements of
the mass have no longer produced upheaval of the bottom within the
prism, or shoals within the canal by the flow of material from the
bank, and after every movement the dredges, working outside the
limits of the prism, have had no difficulty in excavating the material
before it reached the channel. The ultimate condition of stability
will evidently be reached when the broken mass has settled to a
surface not far from horizontal with a nearly vertical bluff at the
limiting break. Accompanying the report of the resident engineer
(Appendix C) is a contour map of the slides, Plate No. 23, showing
their configuration on July 1, 1917, with comparative cross sections
at typical points showing conditions as they existed at the beginning
and at the end of the year, Plate No. 24. All told, 23,259,909 cubic
yards of material have been removed by dredges from the Culebra
slides (east and west), and Mr. Comber estimates that 3,000,000 cubic
yards yet in motion will have to be removed. The points established
last year, at the request of the Chairman of the Slide Committee of
the National Academy of Sciences, on Gold, Zion, Contractors, and
Purple Hills and at the bases of Gold and Contractors Hills, have
been checked from time to time. No indication of movement of the
points has been detected. Extension of the peripheral breaks of the
east bank have occurred, so as to increase the area of the east slide by
3 acres. The amount of material involved in these extensions is rela-
tively insignificant, and on account of the distance from the canal
it is improbable that any of it will reach the prism.
Cucaracha slide has given no further trouble since the large move-
ment that blocked the canal in August, 1916, as described in the
report of last year. To reduce the chances of interruptions to traffic
due to future similar movements if they occur, the material in the
slide was removed for a distance of 100 feet outside the canal prism.
It is believed that in the future the great slides of the canal will
be of historic interest only.
For details of the work of the dredging division, reference is
invited to the report of the resident engineer, Appendix C.
The mechanical plants continued as heretofore, with the addition
of Dry Dock No. 1, at Balboa, which was turned over to this division
for operation on May 15, 1916. On account of the large reduction in
the amount of steam-shovel work and the resultant retirement from
service of railroad rolling stock, the presence of certain naval units
requiring repairs, and other causes, the activities in the field and
shops show a decided tendency toward marine work. The marine
work was 37.6 per cent and the railroad work 21.8 per cent of the
total work of the division. The larger part of the railroad equipment
repair work was done in overhauling and repairing for shipment 15
locomotives, 100 lidgerwood flat cars, 2 unloaders, 40 Oliver dump
cars, and 2 steam shovels, all transferred from the canal to the
Alaskan Engineering Commission. An additional outside order,
which was still in progress at the end of the year, was the repair and
preparation for shipment of 95 locomotives, retired from service on
the canal and sold to A. B. Shaw, of 49 Wall Street, New York, N. Y.,
the terms of the contract providing that the repairs and packing for
shipment be at the expense of the contractor. More than one-half of
this work was completed by the end of the year, and progress is being
made at the rate of 10 locomotives per month.
Other construction and repair work included 15,000 linear feet of
steel cylinders for the foundations of Pier No. 6, at Cristobal; 2,000
feet of penstock piping for the enlargement of the hydroelectric
station at Gatun; construction of two 65-foot dispatch boats for the
dredging division and of two 85-foot supply boats for the marine
division; the manufacture of four electric towing locomotives for the
locks; extensive overhauls of the tugs Boklo and Gatun; repairs to
the steamships Lautero, Themis, and Nicaraguan; and the overhaul
of the four Hamburg-American Line ships in Colon Harbor that
were seized after the declaration of war. At the Balboa dry dock
there were docked for the canal 34 pieces of floating equipment; for
the War and Navy Departments, 15 vessels, with a total tonnage of
94,180; and for commercial lines 18 vessels, with a total tonnage of
73,307. At the Cristobal dry dock 51 pieces of equipment were
docked for the canal; 16 for the War and Navy Departments, with a
total tonnage of 2,563; and 15 with a tonnage of 16,097 for commer-
cial lines. On account of the facilities afforded by the Balboa shops
and dry clock and the congested condition of the shipyards in the
States, upon the recommendation of the superintendent of the divi-
sion the suggestion was made to Government departments interested
that the mechanical division of the canal might be considered avail-
able for a limited amount of construction and repair work that would,
under usual circumstances, be performed in the States. As a result
the construction of a 120-foot coast-guard cutter for the Navy De-
partment is under way, and the extensive overhaul of the steamers
Ancon and Cristobal, operated by the Panama Railroad, will be un-
dertaken at the Balboa dock and shops. Additions and improve-
ments, as foreshadowed in the report of last year, have been made
to the Balboa shops' equipment as follows: The Balboa roundhouse
has been enlarged; an instrument repair shop has been added to
Building 9; a new pattern shop, with restaurant on the second floor,
has been constructed; and the car shop, oxy-acetylene plant, and
pipe shop have been enlarged. Building 29, inclosing the dry-dock
pumping plant, electrical switchboard, and air compressors for the
Balboa shops, has been completed and its equipment installed. A
120-inch engine lathe, 42-inch mill and planer, 50-ton dry-dock
crane, and additional machinery and hand tools have been purchased
On account of the diminishing amount of dredging work required
in Gaillard Cut and the reduced concentration of dredging equip-
ment in that part of the canal, the work in the Paraiso shops was
much reduced. The force was reduced to about one-third of its pre-
vious size, a part being sent to Balboa shops and a part to Cristobal,
and most of the work formerly done on the dredging equipment at
the Paraiso shops was distributed between Balboa and Cristobal, as
was most convenient.
At the time the construction of the Balboa dry dock was deter-
mined upon the project contemplated a smaller dock, No. 2, parallel
and in close proximity to the 1,000-foot dock. The construction of
the smaller dock was suspended until the necessity for it should be-
come sufficiently apparent to justify an appropriation of funds for
the purpose. Experience has indicated that when the smaller dock
is required it should be located at or near the Atlantic terminus of
the canal. Investigations are in progress, including borings, to
determine the character of foundations to develop the most favor-
able site. Besides considerations concerning the requirements of
commercial shipping, the establishment of the large submarine base
at the Atlantic end of the canal would in itself determine the ad-
visability of a dry dock there. The old French dry dock near Mount
Hope, somewhat enlarged early in the construction period of the
canal, is only 300 feet long and 50 feet wide, and is of sufficient
capacity to accommodate only the smallest types of vessels. The
Cristobal shops are not equipped to handle the heavier marine work,
and the buildings are dilapidated from age. New buildings and addi-
tional equipment will be required in connection with the dry dock
when constructed, and in advance of its construction, to care for the
increased marine repair work that has developed. For further details
of the operations of the mechanical division, see report of the super-
intendent, Appendix D.
Labor.The total force of silver employees of all grades employed
on the canal on June 30, 1917, was 21,146. This represents about the
average force throughout the year; fluctuations occur from time to
time as work is completed or new work begun. The available supply
on the Isthmus has been more than sufficient to meet our demands,
and no recruitment of contract labor has been done.
Quarters.The completion of the program of new quarters author-
ized has materially reduced congestion. On June 30, 1916, there were
736 applicants for family quarters on file, and on June 30, 1917, 257,
distributed, as follows: Ancon-Balboa, 126: Paraiso-Pedro Miguel.
8; Gatun, 2; and Cristobal, 121%- The completion of.the 105 apart-
merits at New Cristobal in July, 1917, further reduces the list of ap-
plicants unprovided for to 152. Including these 105 apartments,
585 new apartments for gold employees and 353 for silver employees
were provided. On account of the cheap production of electricity at
the hydraulic station, experiments have been made with the installa-
tion of electric ranges in a few quarters, as a substitute for coal-
burning cooking stoves. Data are not yet sufficient to determine the
advisability, from an economic point of view, of using electricity as
a fuel in all quarters. It would appear that a sufficient number of
family quarters are now provided for the permanent gold force, ex-
cept in the Cristobal district. The situation in that district is com-
plicated by the fact that many of the old French quarters at Cris-
tobal are greatly deteriorated from age and the expense of mainte-
nance is high. Furthermore, the encroachment of the business build-
ings upon the residential section of Old Cristobal will make it nec-
essary to demolish the old quarters at that place. To provide for
the operating force of the canal when there is no doubt as to the per-
manency of the location, the concrete type of construction for quar-
ters has proved to be satisfactory and economical in the long run.
It would seem to be a proper policy to provide quarters of permanent
construction at the new town site as the old French quarters at
Cristobal are condemned and destroyed. Bachelor quarters are not
adequate at either terminal city to provide for the present force, and
ultimately concrete quarters of a type similar to the set constructed
at Ancon in 1916 should be provided for bachelors, so as to permit the
assignment of one individual to a room. Quarters should also be
provided for the permanent force of silver employees. Unrest in the
common-labor class, due largely to the expense of hiring rooms in
the cities of Colon and Panama, has been apparent from time to time.
Corrals.There was a decreased demand for animal-drawn trans-
portation, principally in the municipal engineering and building
divisions. The operation of automobile trucks and gasoline vehicles
has proved to be more economical. Seventy-five animals were pur-
chased, 22 horses and 38 mules died or were destroyed, and 1 horse
was surveyed, condemned, and sold. Including 134 horses and 51
mules at work in the pastures and plantations, the total number of
animals on June 30, 1917, was 533, of which there were 183 horses
and 350 mules.
Materials and supplies.A total of 1,347 requisitions were pre-
pared and forwarded to the general purchasing officer, as compared
with 1,776 during the previous year. The total value of material
received was $10,817,106.51, as compared with $9,945,390.32 for the
preceeding year; local purchases cost $1,516,914.79, as compared with
$1,569,812.15 for last year. There was a marked increase in price
of all staple articles and material purchased. The value of material
in stock on June 30, 1917, was $6,326,611.90, as against $4,198,392.34
on June 30, 1916, not including the stock of obsolete material and
scrap. The total issues of material from storehouses was $12,083,-
926.25, as compared with $9,028,564.07 for last year. The increase
in value of stock on hand is attributable to the constantly increasing-
cost of material and supplies and to the necessity for increasing the
stock of articles such as paints, rope, etc., for sale to steamships, to
the policy of carrying a six-months' supply of gasoline, oils, grease,
etc., on hand at all times, owing to uncertainties of delivery on ac-
count of war conditions, and also to the increased amount of ship
work being performed by the mechanical division, making it neces-
sary to increase the stock of steel. Sales to Government departments
and to commercial steamships totaled $593,623.00 in value, which is
an increase of $157,543.20 over the previous year; sales to steamers
increased by an amount of $180,755.41; sales to the Army amounted
to $211,466.05; and to the Navy, $27,760.38. The principal items sold
to the Army and Navy were lumber, building material, general hard-
ware, gasoline, and kerosene. The consumption of cement for the
year was 270,053 barrels. Details of the collection and disposition
of obsolete material, equipment, and scrap are contained in the
report of the chief quartermaster, Appendix E.
Fuel-oil plants.The contract with the Standard Oil Company
of California expired on June 30, 1917, with one order remaining
for delivery at Balboa of 85,000 barrels on or before August 3, 1917.
New contracts for the following year were entered into with the
Standard Oil Company of California for delivery at Balboa of
700,000 barrels, at $1.60 per barrel, and with the Atlantic Refining
Company for 240,000 barrels for delivery at Cristobal, at $2.09 per
barrel. To provide for the increased storage of oils, two 55,000-
barrel capacity tanks, one at Cristobal and one at Balboa, were leased
from the Panama Canal Storage Corporation. The West India Oil
Company completed a tank at Balboa with capacity of 65,000 barrels,
and a 55,000-barrel tank was completed at Cristobal for The Panama
Canal. The total fuel oil handled by the plants at Balboa and Mount
Hope tank farms amounted to 2,975,223 barrels for 406 vessels, an
increase of 719,104 barrels and of 96 vessels receiving oil, as compared
with the previous year.
Gasoline.Gasoline was stored in bulk in tank No. 31 at Balboa,
and 81,895 gallons w7ere drawn from storage.
Subsistence.The commissaries of the Panama Railroad continued
under the management of the supply department of the canal. The
policy of making the canal as nearly as possible independent of out-
side sources of supply of foodstuffs has been considerably developed
in the effort to keep down the cost of living. The cattle industry has
been particularly successful in this regard. The value of native beef
produced increased from $446,882.69 to $927,551.06, and the con-
sumption varied from 3,843,377 pounds in 1916 to 7,117,613 pounds
in 1917. The fresh beef imported from the United States decreased
from 3,237,598 pounds in 1916 to 1,832,714 pounds in 1917. In the
development of pastures for fattening cattle 23,000 acres have been
cleared, planted in grass, and fenced. Cattle have been purchased
in Colombia, and the cattle ship Caribbean has brought in 14,032 fat.
cattle and 1,637 varying from 1 to 3 years in age. As the result of
the cattle industry in the Zone, it has been possible to sell to em-
ployees beef at the following TDrices, as compared with the prices
for fresh beef imported from the States.
Comparative prices of beef, American and native, prevailing at the close of the
Rib roast (3 pounds up).........
Round steak, bottom............
Round steak, top................
Sirloin steak (choice cut).........
Porterhouse steak (IV pounds up)
Porterhouse steak (short)........
In the gardens and plantations, the development of which has been
begun, it is expected to grow the following products in sufficient
quantities to provide for the Canal Zone population: Cocoanuts,
cacao, plantains, bananas, mangoes, grapefruit, limes, oranges, alli-
gator pears, papayas, breadfruit, corn, yams, yampees, sweet pota-
toes, yucas, peanuts, melons, beans, tomatoes, okra, eggplant, lettuce,
cucumbers, and other small vegetables. Other operations designed
to produce food supplies locally include a hog farm, chicken farm,
tmd dairy. These are in the early stage of development and are as
yet not sufficiently advanced to have an appreciable effect upon the
prices of the commodities concerned.
The net revenue for the year from restaurants and messes was
$641,067.59, a decrease of $19,950.31 from last year. The total cost
of operations was $634,150.33, a decrease of $14,415.06. The profits
were $6,917.26, a decrease of $5,535.25 from last year. No charge has
been included for repairs to buildings, fuel, light, etc., in arriving at
these figures. The Tivoli Hotel, owned and operated by the canal,
showed a net profit of $1,084.86, as compared with a net profit of
$17,007.51 for last year. The Washington Hotel, which is owned
and financed by the Panama Railroad but operated by the canal,
showed for the first time a profit on operations. The profit for the
year was $2,161.99, as compared with the loss for 1916 of $12,454.70.
The Washington Hotel is now becoming of more service to the
traveling public, and the increased business is largely due to the fact
that the steamship lines operating down the west coast of South
America have made Colon their terminal point. Some of the in-
creased business at the Washington Hotel has been at the expense of
the Tivoli Hotel, for the reason just stated. Prior to the 1st of
February the tourist traffic at both hotels was heavy, but it has prac-
tically ceased on account of the war. On account of the failure of
appropriations for the construction of the new Tivoli Hotel it has
been necessary to authorize the expenditure of about $75,000 for re-
pairs to the present structure.
Mount Hope printing plant.The value of the stock on hand on
June 30, 1917, was $81,767.72, as compared with $53,407.02 for last
year. There were added to the equipment of the plant during the
year items amounting in value to $8,409.80. Unserviceable items to
the value of $174.76 were surveyed and disposed of, and the total
value of equipment on hand June 30, 1917, was $46,132.61, a com-
pared with $37,897.57 for last year. The total value of material
issued from the plant was $87,482.47, as compared with $78,115.24
for the preceding period. This printing plant manufactures and
supplies various forms, record books, correspondence paper, and other
similar supplies for the canal and railroad, and prints The Panama
For further details of the work of the supply department, attention
is invited to Appendix E.
The organization of this department has continued as described
in the annual report of 1916, except for changes that were made on
account of the death of Mr. Ad Faure, chief accountant, who had
faithfully served the canal in an important accounting capacity since
1905. The auditor, Mr. H. A. A. Smith, continued in direct charge
of the auditing and accounting division. The division of disburse-
ment remained under the paymaster, Mr. John H. McLean, and the
division of collections under the direction of Mr. T. L. Clear.
Disbursements were made by the paymaster to the amount of
$28,150,610.55 during the year, of which amount $9,363,739.34 were
on account of the Panama Railroad. Employees on the gold roll
of the canal were paid $6,206,950.72 and those on the silver roll
$5,914,259.72. Collections by pay-roll deductions were made from
employees in the sum of $4,028,566.94; of this amount the sum of
$3,822,212.07 was collected for commissary coupon books and meal
tickets and $55,025.07 for rent of quarters by silver employees. The
Commercial National Bank, of Washington, D. C. (Panama branch),
has continued as a Government depository, and small deposits of
both Government and Panama Railroad funds are carried in this
bank. On account of the failure of two local banks other banks
found it desirable to increase their cash balances, thus reducing
materially the supply of cash in local circulation. This made it
necessary to import from the United States more money than usual,
and $1,425,500 in United States currency were imported by the
canal. By arrangement with the Republic of Panama 1,000,000
pesos Panaman coin (equivalent to $500,000 United States currency)
were withdrawn from circulation and replaced with gold coin. The
large bulk necessary to be handled in making payments with the
Panaman silver made this retirement advantageous to the canal.
The collections during the year repaid to appropriations amounted
to $7,844,602.02. Deposits for the payment of tolls and bills for sup-
plies and services were made with the Assistant Treasurer of the
United States by shipping agents and interests to the credit of the
collector of the canal in the sum of $3,623,334.93. Similar deposits
were made with the collector on the Isthmus in the sum of $6,-
641,140.92. Of the total amount thus deposited, the sum of $593,677.89
was refunded upon settlement of accounts. Money-order funds to
the amount of $1,676,500 were transferred to the Postmaster General
in the United States in payment of money orders drawn on the
United States by the Canal Zone post offices.
Under the provisions of section 3 of the sundry civil act of March
3, 1915, two employees detailed by the Treasury Department, one
from the Office of the Auditor for the War Department and one
from the Office of the Comptroller of the Treasury, made the required
semiannual examination of accounts on the Isthmus.
The act of June 12, 1917, authorized a refund of amounts erro-
neously collected as tolls prior to the ruling of the Attorney General
that the tolls collected under the Panama Canal rules of measure-
ment shall not exceed $1.25 per net registered ton, as determined by
United States rules for measurement.
Small claims for damages to vessels passing through the locks
have been paid in accordance with the provision of section 5 of the
Panama Canal act; also a few claims for damages arising in the
canal and harbors. The sum of $2,368.12 has been paid in settlement
of five claims. All claims have thus far been adjusted and settled by
mutual agreement without recourse to the courts.
The total amount appropriated by Congress to June 30, 1917, for
the canal and its fortifications was $439,002,360.22. Of this amount,
$28,580,347.30 were for fortifications, $1,500,000 to cover annual pay-
ments of $250,000 each to the Republic of Panama for Canal Zone
rights, and $6,000 for the expense of presenting the launch Louise
to the French Government. The sum of $23,890,000 has been specifi-
cally appropriated for the operation and maintenance, sanitation,
and civil government of the canal and the Canal Zone. In addition
thereto the act of August 1, 1914, makes the amounts therein appro-
priated for the construction of the canal available for expenses of
maintenance and operation. The sum charged against operation and
maintenance, in accordance with this authority, was $4,289,159.
Under authority of the same act the sum of $2,225,000 of general
appropriations has been expended in the purchase of a stock of
materials and supplies for the operation and maintenance of the
canal. Experience has shown that this sum of $2,225,000 is too small
to cover the value of stock required for operation and maintenance
and for sale to ships using the canal. Under appropriations for con-
struction, materials and supplies for construction purposes have been
purchased and additional purchases have been made from funds for
operation and maintenance, so as to make the total value of stock on
hand at the end of the fiscal year $6,663,458.99; when the construc-
tions are completed and the materials and supplies absorbed therein a
sufficient stock can not be maintained for operation and maintenance
unless future appropriations make provision therefor. It is apparent
that the stock of materials must be maintained at not less than
$5,000,000 to supply the needs of operation and maintenance of the
canal, construction and work performed by it, and its commercial
Deducting from the total canal appropriations all appropriations
for purposes other than construction, there remains a total of $378,-
511,853.92 appropriated for the construction of the canal and its
immediate adjuncts. Of this amount $3,600,000 appropriated for
colliers and coal barges, $1,500,000 for Dock No. 6 at Cristobal,
$300,000 for work on the colliers Ulysses and Achilles, and $720,000
for reboilering and repairing the steamships Ancon and Cristobal,
were specifically exempted by law as a charge against the author-
ized bond issue. This leaves as chargeable against the bond issue
for the construction of the canal a total of $372,391,853.92 thus far
appropriated. The ultimate cost of the canal will be further re-
duced by receipts of sale for construction material and equipment,
and by payments to be made by the Republic of Panama for amounts
expended on account of waterworks, sewers, and pavements in the
cities of Panama and Colon. As a credit on the books, the cost of
the canal is also entitled to the value of buildings and other public
works, equipment and plant, transferred without actual payment
therefor to the Army, the Alaskan Engineering Commission, and
the State Department. The estimated value of items thus trans-
ferred is $1,822,514.12.
Under our agreement with the Republic of Panama, which re-
quires reimbursement to the United States for expenditures con-
nected with the construction, operation, and maintenance of water-
works, sewers, and pavements in the cities of Panama and Colon, the
expenditures to June 30, 1917, were $2,124,069.08 in Panama and
$2,007,368.88 in Colon, including accrued interest to date at the rate
of 2 per cent per annum on the capital cost balance^ and on the pro-
portionate cost of waterworks in the Canal Zone used for supplying
water for the two cities, based upon the quantity of water con-
sumed. For the work in Panama this interest amounted to $232,-
573.29, for the work in Colon $188,388.79, and for the proportionate
cost of the waterworks in the Canal Zone $82,425.65, making a total
of $503,387.73. There has been reimbursed to the United States, or
is immediately due, the sum of $2,063,031.70, leaving a balance of
$1,020,852.53 for the work in Panama and $1,047,553.73 for the work
in Colon, a total of $2,068,406.26 payable in installments in the next
The principal expenditures for construction work during the year
were as followTs:
The completion of the Colon east breakwater at a total expendi-
ture of $392,560.77, the principal item being $367,946.69 for the
placing of concrete blocks amounting to 81,322.1 cubic yards at an
average cost of $4.5246 per cubic yard.
Dredging from Gatun to Pedro Miguel, $380,755.71, including the
removal of 1,080,105 cubic yards of material from Gaillard Cut at
an average cost of $0.3525 per cubic yard.
From Pedro Miguel to the sea expenditures for construction and
dredging amounted to $161,316.95, the principal items covering 246,-
998 cubic yards of material removed from Mirafiores Lake at an
average cost of $0.1464 per cubic yard; and dredging between Mira-
fiores locks and the sea, $127,065.79, covering the removal of 221,138
cubic yards of material, at an average cost of $0.5745 per cubic yard.
For aids to navigation there were expended $22,368.36, covering
mooring stations in Gaillard Cut, boat landing at Gatun locks,
signal station at Empire and at Sosa Hill, and five neAV channel
buoys in Cristobal-Colon harbor.
At Pedro Miguel and Mirafiores there were expended on lock con-
struction $11,890.42 and $11,423.94, respectively, covering the com-
pletion and grading of back fill.
For the extension of the Gatun hydroelectric station there were
expended $104,567.08, and $56,526.87 for operating machinery for
the same; for operating machinery for the Mirafiores steam electric
plant there were expended $10,759.80; transformer substations
$04,595.83; for duct lines $8,466.07; and for distribution lines
In the construction of the Cristobal coaling plant there were ex-
pended $396,030.87, and the sum of $531,761.81 was expended for the
construction of Pier No. 6 at Cristobal and a small boathouse and
landing between Piers Nos. 7 and 8.
In continuing the construction of the Pacific terminal $410,155.63
were expended for dredging in the harbor, involving the removal of
1,945,860 cubic yards of material b}7 dredges, at an average cost of
$0.1852 per cubic yard, and the pumping of 1,378,977 cubic yards of
this dead material for filling swamps between Balboa and Corozal,
at an average cost of $0.0360 per cubic yard.
The principal items of work performed during the year in the
completion of the dry dock at Balboa were as follows: Pumping
plant, $39,416.54, of which amount $33,971.61 cover payments to
contractors; installation of miscellaneous machinery, capstans, crane
track, fittings and bilge block, and electrical and general iron work,
$275,699.87, including $66,767.23 for the 50-ton crane, and entrance
For the Balboa coaling station there were expended $278,991.01,
the principal item being payments to contractors for the coal hand-
ling plant, and continuation of the erection of the stocking and re-
claiming bridges and installation of electrical equipment.
Expenditures in enlargements and improvements of the Balboa
mechanical shops were $232,092.65.
For permanent town sites there were expended $428,545.40.
For permanent buildings $2,659,947.35 were expended, including
storehouses, mess buildings, quarters, hospitals, and schoolhouses.
In the operation and maintenance of the canal $6,788,047.60 were
expended, as against $6,999,750.15 for the preceding year. The main
item of expense for maintenance was the dredging of 8,149,634
cubic yards of material from the slides in Gaillard Cut, at an average
cost of $0.3206 per cubic yard. In this same area there were ex-
pended in the preceding fiscal year $3,513,350.06 for the removal of
12,430,209 cubic yards of material.
Locks operation and maintenance increased from $622,293.01 dur-
ing the fiscal year 1916, to $737,430.39 in 1917. The marine division
expenses increased from $154,891.97 to $313,036.43, this increase being
largely due to increased business during the year and to expenditures
incurred on account of the defense of the canal. Offsetting the total
expense for operation and maintenance are total receipts of $5,808.-
398.70; from tolls, $5,631,781.66: licenses, taxes, fees, and fines
$137,189.38; and profit on business operation, $39,427.66.
The total business operations carried on through Panama Canal
funds amounted to $7,540,160.78, the revenues derived therefrom
being $7,579,588.44. The largest items producing revenue were shop
work, $2,190,705.52; sale of material from stock, $1,210,768.10; con-
struction and repair work, $996,133.38; and subsistence operations,
$783,862.97. The revenues from business operations for 1917 showed
an increase of $1,091,066.83 over those of the preceding year.
During the year 173,475 money orders, to the amount of $3,782,-
763.71, were issued, as against 171,096, to the amount of $3,518,223.83,
during the preceding year.
The act of September 7, 1916, again changed the basis of making
allowances to employees of The Panama Canal and Panama Railroad
on account of injuries and deaths occurring in the performance of
duty. The employees of the canal and railroad are now governed by
the same rules as govern the allowances to employees of other de-
partments of the United States Government. In order to facilitate
the prompt adjustment of claims, an Executive order of the President
under date of September 15, 1916, places the settlement in the hands
of the Governor. Compensation paid on account of injury claims is
chargeable to the injury-compensation fund and not to the appro-
priations for The Panama Canal, as was heretofore the case. Out of
4,068 accidental injuries and 39 accidental deaths of employees, com-
pensation was allowed in accordance with the law in 1,445 cases of
injuries and 15 of deaths. The sum of $28,739.84 was allowed on
account of injuries, and the sum of $25,907.92 on account of deaths.
Of these sums $15,845.04 were paid out on account of injuries re-
ceived and $13,961.57 on account of deaths that occurred after the
new act went into effect.
Sales of coupon books to employees on pay-roll deductions
amounted in value to $3,726,495, and books were sold for cash to the
value of $1,660,000.25. Five hundred and twenty-six examinations
have been made at irregular periods, as contemplated by the regu-
lations, of accounts of all officials and employees charged with the
collection, disbursement, and custody of public funds. The system
of inspection of time books and timekeeping methods has been con-
tinued as heretofore.
For further details attention is invited to Appendix F.
The organization of this department and of the executive office
continued as described in previous annual reports, with Mr. C. A.
Mcllvaine as executive secretary, acting under the direction of the
Governor. There was an increase of 38 employees during the year,
all included in the division of fire, police, and of schools. The in-
creases were made necessary in the police department on account of
the extra vigilance required by war conditions, and in the division
of schools on account of an increase in the number of pupils, requir-
ing additional teachers. The position of superintendent of clubs and
playgrounds was abolished at the beginning of the fiscal year, and
the executive work formerly done by the superintendent was assumed
by the executive secretary, with the assistance of the secretary of
the Balboa Clubhouse. The requirements of law that wages and
salaries on the canal should not exceed by 25 per cent wages and
salaries of corresponding positions in Government employ in conti-
nental United States performing similar duties made necessary the
compilation of data as to rates of pay in the States. Primarily for
this reason a bureau of statistics was organized in the executive office,
formed by placing three employees previously engaged in different
offices, under the direction of an employee who had formerly been
engaged on statistical work in the departmental service in Wash-
ington. All statistical work for the canal was centralized and
assigned to this bureau.
Bureau of Clubs and Playgrounds.
Clubs for gold employees were operated at Cristobal, Gatun.
Paraiso, Pedro Miguel, Ancon. and Balboa, and for silver employees
at Cristobal. Gatun. and La Boca. A new clubhouse was opened at
Paraiso on March 31, 1917, and a club for silver emplo37ees at Cris-
tobal on May 5, 1917.
At Balboa the baseball park and athletic field were completed, in-
cluding the construction of a reinforced-concrete stadium. Play-
ground apparatus was installed on the grounds at Balboa for the use
of children. At the clubhouses it has not been necessary to bring
down from the States as many entertainers as has been the practice
in the past, largely on account of the increased use of moving pic-
tures as forms of entertainment. The number of entertainments by
local amateurs has been increased. Moving-picture exhibitions have
been provided from time to time, without entrance fee, to the leper
colony at Palo Seco, the Corozal Insane Asylum, and the penitentiary
at Gamboa. The superintendents of these institutions report favor-
able results of these exhibitions. During the year 11,618,000 feet of
moving-picture films were shown at the various clubhouses.
Division of Civil Affairs.
This division includes administration of post offices, customs, ship-
ping matters, local licensing, estates of deceased and insane em-
ployees, and immigration matters. There were 16 post offices in
operation during the year; a post office at Fort (riant was opened on
July 1, 1916, and made a money-order office on August 16, 1916; the
post offices at Fort Randolph and Fort Sherman were constituted
money-order offices on November 1, 1916. The total revenue for
the postal service, including box rents and payment from the Panama
Railroad and its commissaries, was $110,741.41, giving an increase
in receipts over 1916 of $13,886.15. Approximately 58 per cent of
mail matter handled by the bureau of posts is official matter of The
Panama Canal, from which no revenue is received. Under the Taft
agreement, which is still in force, a payment of $29,789.63 was made
to the Panaman Government as a credit to its general indebtedness
to the canal, this amount being 40 per cent of the total receipts from
sales of Canal Zone stamps. There were 173,475 money orders issued
during the year, amounting in value to $3,782,763.71, on which fees
amounted to $12,371.28. Compared with the preceding fiscal year,
there was an increase of 2,379 in the number of orders issued, an
increase of $264,539.08 in the value and a decrease of $507.01 in the
fees collected. The decrease in fees is due to the increased number of
deposit money orders issued on which no fee is collected. On June
30,1917, there was on deposit the sum of $355,097.10, covering unpaid
money orders issued by and drawn on Canal Zone post offices in favor
of the remitter. Deposit money orders during the year were issued
to a total value of $1,481,845, and payments of deposit money orders
during the same period aggregated $1,136,115, leaving a balance on
deposit on June 30, 1917, of $696,380. On June 30, 1917, the balance
of old postal saving certificates held by the accounting department
amounted to $1,769. The total cash transactions of the bureau of
posts for the year amounted to $6,559,284.59. Under the provisions
of the act of Congress of August 21, 1916, providing for the payment
of interest at the rate of 2 per cent per annum on all deposit money
orders issued in the Canal Zone, an amount of $1,813.93 was paid as
interest on deposit money orders cashed up to June 30, 1917. During
the year 240,022 parcels and letters were handled in the registry
division of the post offices. Of this number, 127,417 were dispatched,
including 20,854 domestic letters, 4,243 domestic parcels, 22,994 for-
eign letters, 2,198 foreign parcels, 73,696 official letters and parcels
registered free, and 3,432 letters and parcels reregistered free. Com-
pared with the preceding fiscal year, there was an increase of 2,718
registered letters and parcels dispatched. There were delivered dur-
ing the year at all post offices 112,605 registered, insured, and C. O. D.
parcel-post packages, an increase of 5,449 over the previous year.
Effective November 1, 1916, under agreement with the United
States Post Office Department, all transit United States mail and
closed foreign mail via the United States destined to the west coast
of Central and South America, was consigned to the care of the
director of posts of the Canal Zone. During the eight months in
which this arrangement has been in force there were received and
dispatched a total of 55,678 sacks of transit mail from New York
and New Orleans. Of this total 47,770 sacks originated in the United
States and 7,908 sacks in foreign countries. On October 1, 1916,
arrangements were effected for the disposition of all local unclaimed
mail, in accordance with the postal laws and regulations, by the
director of posts, and the former practice of forwarding all unclaimed
mail to the Dead Letter Office at Washington, D. (_'., was discon-
Bureau of Customs.
The bureau of customs has been conducted under regulations
heretofore in force. This bureau is now charged with the duty of
carrying out the provisions of the Executive order of February 6,
1917, relating to the exclusion of Chinese. During the fiscal year
480 prohibited aliens arrived at Balboa and 227 at Cristobal in
transit to the Republic of Panama and other countries.
During the year there were 10 arrests for attempted smuggling of
opium, resulting in 7 convictions.
The bureau of customs certifies invoices covering ordinary ship-
ments from the Canal Zone to the United States, using forms identi-
cal with those prescribed for certification by American consuls at
foreign ports. There were 1,169 such invoices certified during the
year. There were 380 inspections of household goods and miscel-
laneous effects of American manufacture inspected and sealed before
shipment to the United States in accordance with the agreement
with the officials of the LTnited States Treasury Department. Under
authority of section 8 of the act of Congress of August 21, 1916,
providing for the collection of fees for services performed by Canal
Zone customs officers, the amount of $243.50 was collected at Balboa
and $359.50 at Cristobal as canal revenue.
The total number of vessels entering Canal Zone ports was 3,718,
and the total number cleared was 3,721, as compared with 2.130 en-
tered and 2,123 cleared during the preceding year.
There were 3,745 seamen shipped on American vessels and 3,430
seamen discharged, as compared with 2,631 shipped and 2,375 dis-
charged during the previous year.
One hundred and eighty-nine estates of deceased and insane em-
ployees of The Panama Canal and Panama Railroad were adminis-
tered, and 22 estates were in process of settlement at the end of the
year. The amounts involved were $8,568.14.
During the year 2,323 licenses and permits were issued, of which
1,862 were for motor vehicles. Under the Executive order of Sep-
tember 5, 1916, prescribing motor-vehicle regulations for the Canal
Zone, license fees for motor vehicles were considerably reduced. The
total sum collected for licenses and fees of all kinds issued b}T the
division of civil affairs was $9,480.80.
Police and Fire Division.
The number of first-class policemen was increased from 98 to 119
on July 1, 1916, in order to provide proper protection to canal struc-
tures; and on February 4, 1917, 39 additional first-class policemen
were employed for the same purpose. These men were largely re-
cruited from the military forces on the Isthmus who were furloughed
or obtained their discharge upon the termination of their services.
On the eve of the entry of the United States into the war, the
additional men were returned to the Army and a large part of the
work performed by them was transferred to the Military Establish-
ment. Motorcycle patrols, for the enforcement of automobile speed
and operation regulations and for special emergency police service,
were continued throughout the year at Balboa and Cristobal.
Monthly patrols were made of the interior sections of the Canal Zone
from time to time.
In addition to the usual police work, officers of the force conducted
numerous and extensive investigations in connection with the pro-
tection of the canal.
During the year 4,881 persons were arrested, of whom 4,659 were
males and 222 were females. Eighty-one persons were deported from
the Canal Zone. Coroner's investigations were made in 68 cases of
death, of which 30 were due to accidental drowning, 20 to accidental
traumatism, and 18 to other causes. Thirty-eight convicts were re-
ceived at the penitentiary during the year, a decrease of 21 as com-
pared with the previous year. Fifty-four convicts completed terms
of imprisonment and were discharged. At the end of the year 35
convicts remained in custody, as compared with 61 at the close of the
previous year. The convicts were employed on the construction of
new roads between New Culebra and Gamboa, on a small farm of
about 20 acres adjacent to the penitentiary, and on labor inside the
prison in the maintenance of prison buildings and grounds. The
total value of labor performed by convicts amounted to $7,237, at the
rate of $0.12 per hour. The total cost of subsisting and guarding
the convicts was $17,030.05. The total value of labor performed by
common jail prisoners amounted to $12,879.80, at the rate of $0.10 per
hour, of which $4,940 cover labor performed on roads, $6,475 janitor
services, and $1,464.80 miscellaneous work. Two convicts escaped and
both were recaptured; two common jail prisoners escaped and were
not recaptured. Four convicts were pardoned, and a part of the
sentence remitted in four cases.
The organization of the fire-fighting force remained as heretofore.
On June 30, 1917, there were eight volunteer fire companies in the
service, with a total of 122 men, all being employees of The Panama
Canal and Panama Railroad. One hundred and four fires and nine
false alarms were reported. The total loss from all fires amounted
to $3,190.25, and the value of the property endangered from fires was
Division or Schools.
The schools opened on October 2, 1910, and closed on June 30, 1917.
The average daily attendance for the year was 1,709.2, of which
1,212.6 were whites and 496.6 colored. Corresponding figures for the
preceding year were 1,501.4, 1,065.1, and 436.3, respectively. The
total number of white teachers employed during the year wTas 52, as
compared with 43 during the preceding year. There were 14 colored
teachers employed; no increase over the preceding year. The usual
physical examination of pupils in the white grade schools was con-
ducted. Physical training in the white schools at Balboa and Ancon
was continued, under the direction of the physical director of club-
houses. The teaching of Spanish was continued in the last five grades
of white schools. To the industrial training branch there was added
a course in domestic science for girls. The manual-training course
consisted of instructions in woodwork, mechanical and architectural
drawing, elementary metal work, and foundry practice. In the
apprentice school the total enrollment as to trades was as follows:
Boilermakers, 7; blacksmiths, 2; cabinetmaker, 1; coppersmith, 1;
draftsman, 1; electrician, 1; machinists, 17; molders, 2; pipefitters,
4; plumber, 1; pattern maker, 1; shipwright, 1; and shipfitters, 3.
The apprentices were given special technical instruction in the shops
of the mechanical division, and a number of the students continued
their work during the vacation period. Forty-seven girls in the high
school and 120 in the grammar schools were given instruction in
domestic science, including the teaching of sewing, cooking, and gen-
eral household economy. Thirty-seven boys in the high school and 63
in the grammar schools were given manual training. Nineteen build-
ings were used for school purposes during the year.
In the district court 126 cases were pending at the beginning of the
year, 720 cases were filed, and 652 decided, leaving 194 cases pending
on June 30, 1917. There were 128 sessions of the court. Seven hun-
dred and fifty-six marriage licenses were issued by the clerk of the
court and 84 deeds recorded. The sum of $3,997.25 was collected
in fines, costs, and fees.
In the magistrate's court at Balboa 4 cases were pending at the
beginning of the year, 1,750 cases were docketed, and 1,747 were
settled, leaving 7 cases pending at the close of the year. Collections
on account of fines and fees amounted to $6,489.64. In the magis-
trate's court at Cristobal 4 cases were pending at the beginning of the
year, and 2,732 cases were docketed; a total of $6,792.04 was collected
in fees and fines. The report of the district attorney is printed as
Appendix H. The marshal for the district court received 633
summons, writs, citations, subpoenas, etc., served 553, and was unable
to accomplish 80, as the persons concerned could not be found.
Relations with Panama.
Negotiations by correspondence or personal conference between the
executive secretary and the secretary of foreign relations of the Re-
public of Panama included, outside the regular routine of office busi-
ness, the following:
Removal of embargo on shipments of arms and ammunition con-
signed to merchants in the cities of Panama and Colon.
Preservation of neutrality of the Canal Zone and the Republic of
Panama and treatment of vessels in the service of the entente powers
arriving and departing from Canal Zone ports and passing through
Construction of a garbage incinerator for the city of Panama.
Police protection at Panama Railroad stables in the city of Panama,
and the condemnation of certain private stables for sanitary reasons.
Additional accommodations at Santo Tomas Hospital for persons
suffering from tuberculosis.
Cooperation of the Canal Zone bureau of posts in expediting the
delivery of mails for the Republic of Panama.
Cancellation of saloon licenses at Gatuncillo, in the Republic of
Panama, because of being near supply department plantations and
causing trouble among Panama Canal laborers.
The presentation to the Republic of Panama of an old French re-
lief map of the Canal Zone and certain maps and models of the locks
for use in the School of Arts and Trades in the city of Panama.
Revision of maritime regulations in force in Panaman ports.
Ordinance respecting the registration of births, deaths, burials, and
disinterments in the cities of Panama and Colon.
Reciprocal license fees on motor cars owned by residents of the
Republic of Panama and operated in the Canal Zone, and on cars
owned in the Canal Zone and operated in the Republic of Panama.
The importation of articles, for their personal use, by employees of
The Panama Canal and the Panama Railroad Company and by the
post exchanges operated by the United States Army in the Canal
Handling of Chinese passengers arriving at the port of Balboa and
the exclusion of undesirable persons from the Isthmus of Panama.
The lack of enforcement of sanitary regulations in the cities of
Panama and Colon.
Amendment to Sanitary Rules and Regulations in connection with
the issuance of building permits for buildings in the suburban or
unimproved sections of the cities of Panama and Colon.
The question of commissary privileges for members of the diplo-
matic corps accredited to the Republic of Panama, and the curtail-
ment of s'aid privileges for nonemployees.
The deportation of insane patients treated at the expense of the
Republic of Panama at the Corozal Hospital for the Insane.
The selection of a site for a new slaughterhouse in the city of
Colon, and the matter of slaughtering animals for Colon consump-
tion in the Cristobal abattoir.
Arrests of Panamans for trespassing in restricted area of Balboa
For further details see Appendix G.
Judge Frank Feuille continued as special attorney, and as such
represented the Government's interests before the Joint Land Com-
mission, prepared drafts of Executive orders necessary to put into
effect certain provisions of law, and in addition served as counsel for the
Panama Railroad Company on the Isthmus. The duty of revising and
codifying the laws of the Canal Zone, with which the special attorney
is also charged, has not yet been completed, due in large part to a
ruling of the Attorney General of the United States that the Presi-
dent is without power to revise presidential orders issued prior to
the passage of the Panama Canal act without specific authority from
Congress. Under the act of August 21, 1916, specific authority was
conferred for certain revisions of former Executive orders, as fol-
1. To authorize the President to make rules and regulations in
matters of health, sanitation, and quarantine for the Canal Zone.
2. To make and enforce rules and regulations for the use of public
roads and highways in the Canal Zone, and for regulating, licensing,
and taxing the use and operation of all self-propelled vehicles used
on the public highways.
3. The act makes it unlawful for any person to make any breach of
the peace or engage in or permit any disorderly, indecent, immoral,
or unlawful conduct in the Canal Zone.
4. It provides that deposit money orders issued in the Canal Zone
post offices shall bear interest at a rate not to exceed 2 per cent per
5. It authorizes customs officers in the Canal Zone to levy fees
equivalent to those prescribed by the United States consular regula-
tions for services performed by consular officers for all certificates,
marine protest^ or notarial services.
6. It bestowed upon the shipping commissioner and deputy ship-
ping commissioner of The Panama Canal the same powers, in respect
to seamen of vessels of the United States, as are exercised by consular
officers of the United States in foreign ports, and by shipping com-
missioners in the ports of the United States.
7. And finally, the act authorized the President to make'rules and
regulations affecting the right of any person to enter, remain upon,
or pass over any part of the Canal Zone; to establish rules and regula-
tions requiring any vessel bringing a person to the Canal Zone in con-
travention of law to return such person to the country whence he
came; and provides that the owner of such vessel, in addition to fine
and penalties authorized by law, may be required to pay all costs of
the detention and return of the person whose entry is prohibited, and
clearance may be withheld from such vessel from any port of the
Canal Zone until the costs of the offense are paid.
Under the authority of this act an Executive order was prepared
and submitted to the President for his signature, and signed by him
on September 5, 1916. It prescribes the license fees to be charged to
the various kinds of motor vehicles, and permits the Governor to ex-
empt from the payment of license fees motor vehicles operated ex-
clusively within certain areas or districts of the Canal Zone to be de-
fined by him, and to prohibit by public notice motor vehicles from
operating on such portions of the Canal Zone as he may designate,
when, in his judgment, the public interests requires it; or the Gov-
ernor may authorize any of the said vehicles to be operated in any
areas or districts designated by him, upon such conditions as he may
deem necessary or convenient to the welfare of The Panama Canal.
Under the authority of the same act of Congress, the President pro-
mulgated an Executive order dated February 6, 1917, relating to the
exclusion of Chinese. This order repeals the Executive order of
January 9, 1908, which extended to the Canal Zone law No. 6 of 1904
of the Republic of Panama. This law of the Republic is no longer
in force in the Canal Zone since the enactment of the Executive order
just referred to. This order confers ample authority upon the Gov-
ernor, The Panama Canal, to cooperate with the Republic of Panama
in preventing the entering into that jurisdiction of Chinese in viola-
tion of Panaman law. The recent order gives more liberty to vessels
carrying Chinese crews in transit in the canal than did the Executive
order of January 9,1908, which is repealed, the purpose being to make
the canal as free for the transit of ships as is consistent with the
safety of the canal and the preservation of the laws of the Canal
Another Executive order was issued by the President on Febru-
ary 6, 1917, by authority of the above-mentioned act of Congress,
for the exclusion and deportation of undesirables from the Canal
Zone. This order is more comprehensive in its scope .and provi-
sions than was the former ruling, and provides a more efficient ma-
chinery for the exclusion and deportation of undesirables in the
interest of public health and good order on the Canal Zone.
Under the authority of the Executive order of August 6, 1908,
the law department of the Canal Zone, through the special attor-
ney, has settled 199 claims arising out of the presidential depopu-
lation order of December 5, 1912, and in the settlement of these
claims an amount of $140,45G.GG was paid. These settlements have
increased the total of claims adjusted through the instrumentality
of the special attorney to 5,443 claims for damages for lands and
improvements taken over by the Government for canal purposes,
and the total amount paid aggregates $1,240,926.60. These settle-
ments are made independently of the operations of the Joint Com-
The expenses to the canal for the operations of the Joint Commis-
sion and umpire for the year were $42,896.99, of which the sum of
$39,509.87 was for salaries. The Joint Commission during the year
made 43 awards, covering 85 claims, the awards aggregating $171,-
538.30. Fifteen of these awards were for land claims and 70 for
improvements only. The grand total of claims settled by the sev-
eral Joint Commissions appointed under Articles VI and XV of the
Panama Canal treaty is 865, and the amount paid under awards
made by these Commissions aggregates $1,152,090.64. During the
year the Joint Commission dismissed 14 claims for lack of evi-
dence ; 388 claims because direct settlement had been made with the
claimants by the representatives of the United States; 305 under
rules of default against the claimants, who had failed to appear to
prosecute their claims after due notice by publication had been given
for 60 days in one of the local newspapers in the city of Panama;
8 claims were dismissed for want of jurisdiction in the Joint Com-
mission to entertain them; 1 claim was dismissed for the reason that
it was filed after the expiration of the period fixed by the rule of the
Commission, with the consent of the two Governments, within which
claims were required to be filed; 1 claim was dismissed because it
was a duplicate of a former claim filed under another name by an-
other person; and 10 were dismissed because they had been disposed
of by awards of a previous Commission.
During the year 20 claims were certified to the umpire by the
Joint Commission; 4 were withdrawn from his consideration and
awards made for payment by the Joint Commission. The umpire
dismissed 2 cases certified to him and disposed of 7 claims, the ag-
gregate sum awarded by him being $175,000. Admiral Victor Maria
Concas y Palau, umpire of the Joint Commission, died on Septem-
ber 25,1916, and on March 24, 1917, Mr. Manuel Walls y Merino was
appointed as his successor. Mr. Walls was selected by His Majesty
the King of Spain, at the request, of the President of the United
States and the President of Panama. Owing to the delay incident
to the preparation of records for submission to the umpire, no awards
were made by Mr. Walls during the fiscal year. The number of
claims remaining for the umpire's consideration is 9, of which 2 are
claims for improvements only. There were, at the end of the year,
179 claims pending before the Joint Commission, including lands
and improvements, an aggregate in amount claimed of $8,929,278.85.
For reasons explained in detail in the report of the special attor-
ney that official declined to certify an award for payment in one case,
and recommended that it be protested by the United States author-
ities, by whom the matter is still under consideration.
On December 28, 1916, a motion was filed by the special attorney
through the Joint Commission, asking that in trial of claims no evi-
dence be admitted by the Commission respecting values except such
as tended to prove values of property prior to November 19, 1903, in
conformity with Article VI of the Panama Canal treaty. On May
16, 1917, the Joint Commission overruled the motion of the special
attorney by a majority vote, Commissioner Bouve dissenting. The
matter has been submitted, through proper channels, to the State De-
partment, together with the opinion of the Panaman members of
the Commission, and the respective opinions of Commissioners Bouve
At the close of the fiscal year there were 45 revocable licenses in
effect, issued by The Panama Canal for lands within the Canal Zone,
of which number 15 were issued during the fiscal year. These licenses
include lots occupied by oil companies for oil tank sites, residences
for the employees of the oil companies, church buildings, lodge halls,
office buildings for steamship companies, and other similar purposes.
The total rental collected under the licenses issued was $15,008.02.
The report of the special attorney is attached, as Appendix I.
The health of employees and other residents of the Canal Zone
has continued good. No cases of yellow fever or plague originated
on or was brought to the Isthmus during the year. On November
2, 1916, a case of smallpox in a West Indian sailor was brought to
Ancon Hospital from Panama City. Two secondary cases, both in
young children, occurred in the same house from which the first case
came, but there was no further spread of the disease. The gross
cost of the health department was $1,023,224.34, as compared with
$942,310.44 for 1916. The revenues from pay patients and other
sources amounted to $441,303.13, showing an increase of $51,296.42
over the revenues of 1916. There has been a very satisfactory de-
gree of freedom from malaria in the population of the Zone; among
the employees whose duties confined them to the sanitated districts
the disease was almost entirely absent. The greatest number of
cases arose among the employees engaged in the farms and gardens
outside of the sanitated districts and among the troops whose duties
required them to spend considerable time in the interior and near
native towns in the Republic of Panama. In the cities of Panama
and Colon the leading cause of death is tuberculosis. This disease
caused the death of 5.2 per thousand for the year in Panama, and
repeated representations have been made to the Panaman Govern-
ment concerning the necessity for facilities for the isolation and
treatment of sufferers from the disease.
The average population of the Canal Zone was 31,048. as com-
pared with 31,384 last year. The death rate from disease in this
population was 8.95 per thousand, as compared with 11.02 in 1916.
The highest hospital admission rates for disease occurred in May
and August and the lowest in September and November.
The city of Panama.The average population was 60,778, as com-
pared with 60,576 for last year. In this population the death rate
from disease was 27.97 per thousand, as compared with 27.27 for
the preceding year.
The city of Colon.In Colon the average population was 24,693,
as compared with 27,012 for last year. The death rate from disease
was 24.54, as compared with 24.51 for last year.
Division or Hospitals.
The average number of patients per day under treatment in Ancon
Hospital was 770, as compared with 748 for 1916. The average
number of employees per day sick in hospital was 226 for 1917. as
compared with 267 for 1916. The New Board of Health Laboratory
was occupied on February 28, 1917. Section B of the ward group
was occupied on April 10, 1917, and the admitting office and dis-
pensary on May 8, 1917. The remainder of the new hospital project,
for which Congress appropriated in the sundry civil act for the fiscal
year 1918, includes the administration building, kitchen and mess
building, isolation building for contagious diseases, nurses' home,
two ward buildings, and new quarters for the superintendent. The
new buildings, when constructed, will give the hospital a total ca-
pacity of 610 beds, exclusive of the isolation building, with accommo-
dations for 80 beds if necessary.
Board of Health Laboratory.In addition to the customary rou-
tine work, the introduction of cattle, hog, and chicken industries
on a large scale by the supply department has developed the necessity
for considerable research in the detection and prevention of the
various diseases to which these animals and fowls are subject.
Clinics.In the surgical clinic 1,506 major and 1,415 minor opera-
tions were performed; in the medical clinic 3,398 cases were treated;
and in the eye and ear clinic 736 operations were performed, 693
prescriptions were written, and 1,225 prescriptions for correction of
vision by glasses.
Grounds and police.The construction of the new buildings, with
resultant concentration, made possible the establishment of new
boundary lines for the hospital reservation, which removed four
family quarters, the old admitting office and dispensary, and a set
of bachelor quarters from the limits of the reservation.
Corozal Hospital and farm.The Corozal Hospital and farm re-
mained under the supervision of the superintendent of Ancon Hos-
pital. The hospital is for the care and treatment of the insane, of
Avhom there were 350 patients on June 30, 1917, as compared with 291
on June 30, 1916. Several improvements were made in the personnel
of the supervisory force, providing for care and treatment by doctors
and nurses who have specialized in this class of work. The hospital
is available for patients from the Republic of Panama, on a pay or
charity basis, as circumstances require. The sundry civil act for
1918 authorized the transfer of insane patients whose American citi-
zenship is established, but for whom no State institution is respon-
sible, to St. Elizabeths Hospital in the District of Columbia.
At the Corozal farm there was maintained a dairy for providing
fresh milk to patients in the canal hospitals, on physicians' prescrip-
The hospital group consists of hospital and dispensary building,
doctors' quarters, morgue, and garage and storeroom, all of perma-
nent concrete construction. There remains to complete the present
authorized project a set of concrete quarters for nurses, for which
provision was made in the sundry civil act for 1918.
Two hundred and sixty-four major and 1,944 minor operations
were performed during the year.
PALO SECO LEPER ASYLUM.
The average number of patients per day cared for wras 66.21.
There were 65 patients at the beginning of the year; 12 were ad-
mitted, 11 died, and 1 was discharged, leaving 65 under treatment
at the end of the year. Two new ward buildings authorized last
year had been completed, labor being performed by patients under
the supervision of the superintendent. One of the old ward build-
ings was reconstructed and fitted up as an infirmary, operating room,
and dispensary, thus providing accommodations for the most serious
cases requiring the constant care of an attendant. A new well for
water supply for the asylum has been sunk to a depth of 147 feet,
providing an ample supply of water.
SANTO TOMAS hospital.
This hospital is owned by the Government of Panama, but is op-
erated under the supervision of the health department of The Pan-
ama Canal, the canal furnishing, at its cost, the superintendent, 2
physicians, 1 interne, and 3 nurses. The present building is inade-
quate in size and arrangement, and there is a great necessity for a
separate building for tuberculosis cases. The Panaman Government
is now considering the project of building a new hospital in the
exposition grounds and abandoning the present hospital group. This
is very desirable, but in the meantime there is urgent need for tem-
porary alterations and additions to the present hospital.
Five dispensaries, not including those at Ancon and Colon Hos-
pitals, have been maintained throughout the year. A new dispen-
sary building of permanent type is nearing completion at Pedro
Miguel; the concrete dispensary building for Gatun has been au-
thorized and will be constructed during the coming year.
Besides the maintenance of sanitary work in and around the towns
in the ('anal Zone, there has been extensive sanitary work done in
the Mount Hope-Cristobal district. This district was formerly a
center of malarial infection, and the keeping down of mosquitoes by
temporary ditching and by spraying with oil was expensive and in-
effective. The swamps have been reclaimed and graded by fill
pumped from hydraulic dredges. The result of this wTork is the
almost complete disappearance of the Anopheles mosquito and the
practical elimination of malaria from employees living at the At-
lantic terminal. Fill of a similar kind and for a similar purpose
is nearing completion in the swamp areas between the old and new
A model oil-burning incinerator of 120 tons daily capacity is be-
ing erected on Gavilan Island, where it will serve the districts of
Ancon, Balboa, and Fort Grant, as well as the city of Panama. The
abandonment of the present insanitary garbage dumps will materi-
ally reduce the fly and rat nuisance. A similar incinerator, of
smaller capacity, has been authorized and will be erected at Colon
during the coming year.
The sanitary work in the cities of Panama and Colon is under the
direction of the health officers of the respective cities, Avho are em-
ployed by the canal and are under the immediate supervision of the
chief health officer. They are charged with the enforcement of the
sanitary regulations and health ordinances prescribed by official de-
cree of the Panaman Government at the request of the canal. These
regulations provide for meat inspection, the supervision of build-
ing construction as to sanitary and structural conditions, the vacci-
nation of the school population, the recording of birth and death
statistics, the inspection of food, street cleaning, garbage collection
and disposal, and the extermination of rats and flies, and, in general,
preventive measures against the incidence and spread of disease.
The quarantine officers board and inspect all incoming steamers
for the purpose of detecting and isolating persons affected with a
quarantinable disease. Vessels arriving from certain ports against
which a quarantine is enforced are kept in quarantine until the
quarantine period has lapsed. The plague situation along the west
coast of South America remains practically unchanged, and it is still
necessary to enforce quarantine against the small northern Ecua-
dorian ports and other ports as far south as Valparaiso, Chile. Guay-
aquil, Ecuador, has shown the heaviest infection of both bubonic
plague and yellow fever of all the coastal cities.
For further details attention is invited to the report of the chief
health officer, Appendix J.
Unusual difficulty was experienced in securing an adequate supply
of skilled mechanics in the United States for duty on the Isthmus,
especially in the shipbuilding and repairing trades, due to the ab-
normal activities in the various manufacturing plants and ship yards.
Fifty-four per cent of those tendered employment failed to accept,
as against 48 per cent (hiring the preceding fiscal year. One thou-
sand four hundred and seventeen persons were tendered employment
in grades above that of laborer, of which 767 accepted and were ap-
pointed; no decrease was experienced in the work of the correspond-
ence and record division.
In the office of the assistant auditor of the canal on duty in the
Washington office, 15,664 vouchers for payment, amounting to $10,-
853,282.68, and 274 collection vouchers, amounting to $508,257.69, and
1.249 settlements by transfer of appropriations, aggregating $665,-
317.90, were given administrative examination. These figures show
an increase in disbursements made amounting to $678,688.66, an
increase in collections of $138,191.14, and an increase in transfer set-
tlements of $248,317.90, as compared with the corresponding figures
of the preceding year. One hundred and sixty-nine contracts were
prepared, involving an amount of $5,096,989.48, an increase of 37 in
number and of $723,192.26 in amount over the figures of the preced-
The purchasing department at the Washington office is responsible
for the filling of all requisitions forwarded from the Isthmus for
materials and supplies. The assistant purchasing agents have been
continued at New York, New Orleans, and San Francisco, who have
in addition acted as receiving and forwarding agents of such mate-
rials as have been purchased for delivery to the Isthmus on ships sail-
ing from their respective ports. Medical and hospital supplies for the
Isthmus have been purchased, as heretofore, through the Medical
Supply Department, United States Army, New York City. The pre-
liminary inspection of materials purchased has been made under the
supervision of the inspecting engineer, under the direction of the
general purchasing officer. The work of inspection has been facili-
tated, as heretofore, by assistance rendered by district officers of the
Corps of Engineers and by the Bureau of Standards, Bureau of
Mines, Bureau of Chemistry, and the Medical Department, Ordnance
Department, Signal Corps, and the Quartermaster Corps of the
United States Army. A total of 8,890 orders was placed through the
Washington office of the canal during the year, as compared with
8,856 for the preceding year, the total value of the orders being
$10,403,996.08 for 1917, as compared with $8,495,099.59 for 1916.
For further details attention is invited to Appendix K.
Governor, The Panama Canal.
Hon. Newton D. Baker,
Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.
THE PANAMA CANAL
Co/. C/VfSrfft HAttD/NG U.S.A.
PRESIDENT OF THE PANAMA R.R&
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ENGINEER OF MAINTENANCE
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ENGINEER OF DOCKS
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Mayor C. O. SHBHB//L USA.
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Under /Ae Governor /or
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ORGANIZATION Or THE PANAMA CANAL JUNE 30 1917
KEPORT OF THE ENGINEER OF MAINTENANCE.
The Panama Canal.
Office of the Engineer of Maintenance,
Balboa IT ights, Canal Zone, July 20, 1917.
Sir: I have the honor to submit the following report of work done
under the jurisdiction of this office during the fiscal year ended June
The duties of the engineer of maintenance have remained as in the
past, excepting that on July 1, 1916, the construction of fortification
work was transferred to the district engineer officer. United States
Army: on December 1, 1916, the office of the engineer of docks was
transferred from the Panama Railroad Company to this office; and
on February 9, 1917, the office of the resident engineer, building divi-
sion, was transferred to this office from the department of operation
The office was under your charge, with the undersigned as assistant
to the engineer of maintenance, until January 11, 1917, upon which
date the undersigned was appointed engineer of maintenance upon
your vacating that office upon your appointment as Governor.
The various divisions and sections have been in charge of the fol-
Electrical division.Maj. William H. Rose, United States Army,
continued as electrical engineer until his relief from duty with The
Panama Canal on June 1, 1917, when Maj. Theodore II. Dillon.
United States Army, was appointed electrical engineer.
Building division.Mr. Hartley Rowe, resident engineer, has been
in charge of the building division since February 9, 1917, Avhen he
succeeded Mr. George M. Wells.
Locks divisions.The Atlantic locks continued under the direct
charge of Capt. T. H. Dillon, United States Army, until March 5,
1917, when Capt. E. J. Atkisson, United States Army, was appointed
superintendent. Mr. E. D. Stillwell was appointed superintendent
effective April 15, 1917, vice Capt. Atkisson, relieved from duty with
The Panama Canal. Mr. W. R. Holloway was appointed superin-
tendent of the Pacific locks, effective August 16, 1916, vice Mr. R. H.
Muvicipal division.Mr. D. E. Wright, municipal engineer, con-
tinued in charge of this division.
Terminal construction.Mr. T. B. Monniche, engineer of docks,
has been in charge of the Atlantic dock construction (excepting the
Cristobal coaling plant) throughout the year. Mr. F. H. Cooke,
designing engineer, was in charge of the Cristobal dock construction
and all Pacific dock construction work until his relief from duty with
the canal, after which date Mr. Bernard Duchscher, assistant engi-
neer, hail charge of all coaling plant inspection work and Mr. A. R.
Brown, assistant engineer, had charge of other construction work at
the Pacific terminals. Since April 14,1917, Mr. A. R. Brown has also
had charge of the work of completion of coaling plants.
Section of meteorology and hydrography.Mr. F. D. Willson,
chief hydrographer, continued in charge of this section.
Section of office engineer.Mr. C. J. Embree, office engineer, con-
tinued in charge of this section.
Section of surveys.Mr. O. E. Malsbury, assistant engineer, con-
tinued in charge of this section.
Lock Operation and Maintenance,
The following table gives the total commercial and noncommercial
lockages of the year:
To July 1,1916...
During fiscal year
To July 1,1917.
To July 1,1916...
During fiscal year
To July 1,1917.
To July 1, 1916...
During fiscal year
To July 1,1917.
All lockages. Commercial lockages. Commercial vessels. Noncommercial lockages.
2,254 1,901 1,779 1,741 1,980 1,909 475 160
4,155 3,520 3,889 635
2,317 2,068 1,825 1,797 1,925 1,938 492 271
4,385 3,622 3,863 763
2,277 2,025 1,842 1,792 1,926 1,930 435 233
4,302 3,634 3,856 668
water consumption, gatun lake.
Complete data as to Gatun Lake hydrography are given herein-
after, but for your information the following data have been com-
piled for the past fiscal year.
Millions of cubic feet of water. Per cent loss. Per cent of total.
1,891.49 11,385.27 10.14 34.13 28.68 625.00 13.535 81.47 .072 .244 .205 4.472 10.306+ 62.039+ .055 + .185+ .156+ 3. 405+
76.86 674.78 544. 45 3,080.86 1.756 15.416 12.439 70.388 .418+ 3.6769+ 2.966+ 16.7S7+
4,376.95 99.999 99.9939
Average quantity per month.
By wastage over Gatun spillway.
By leakage at Gatun spillway____
By transfer to Mirafiores Lake____
By leakage at all locks...........
By drawing from storage........
Total water lost.
For lockages, Atlantic...
For lockages, Pacific.....
For hydroelectric stat ion.
Total useful water.....
Total average monthly amount of water available through rainfall.
Total average amount drawn from storage.........................
Total average amount used or lost........................................................ 18,351.06
Useful water, 4,376.95-r-lS,351.66= 23.83 percent.
Percentage of water used for lockages= 6.88 per cent.
During the exceptionally dry season of last winter the lake was
drawn From plus 86.70 feet <>n January 2 to a low point of plus 83.14
on April 27. During this period there were used tor power develop-
ment 12,010.57 million cubic feet of water, an amount which is not
greatly below the storage capacity of the lake between these two
levels. In other words, if the hydroelectric station had been with-
drawn from service throughout the dry season, and if no spilling had
been enforced, Gatun Lake would have passed through the dry season
with a loss of level of only 0.7 foot, although supplying water for
an average of 166 through lockages per month.
The new hydroelectric station when developed to its ultimate ca-
pacity will call for about 150 per cent more water than the existing
station, a monthly consumption of about 7,700 million cubic feet, as
against 3,080 million cubic feet at present. A study has been made
as to the effect this enlargement of the station will have on the lake
storage in an exceptionally dry season, and the following results may
be briefly stated:
Between the levels of +87 (which may be regarded as the prac-
ticable maximum at which the lake may be held during the month
preceding the dry season drop in elevation) and +80 (42.67 feet over
upper miter sills and 10 feet draft through the lake channels) there
is storage capacity for 31,890 million cubic feet of water. Assuming
inflow and all losses, except those for lockage and power, the same as
during the last dry season, the study shows that without any use of
water for power, the lake would have provided sufficient water for
an average of 40 through lockages per day.
There is no doubt as to the ability of the lake to enter on the dry
season at its maximum level, even with this increased use of water for
power purposes, throughout the wet season, and with an increased
use of water for lockage up to the capacity of the canal for traffic.
The increase in the water consumption by the hydroelectric station
will simply utilize some portion of the water supply which would
otherwise be wasted over Gatun spillway, and the plant may be
operated at full capacity during at least eight months of the year,
and at partial capacity during the dry season, depending upon the
amount of traffic passing through the canal. During successive dry
seasons it will be necessary to closely observe the growth in traffic
and the accompanying "increase in demand for water for lockage
purposes. As the locks demand an increasing amount of water, the
power output of the hydroelectric station may be decreased, sup-
plying the deficiency in power from the steam station at Mirafiores.
This arrangement of using Mirafiores steam plant as a reserve for
power is preferable to any plan involving an additional hydroelec-
tric-power site, as its installation would involve a heavy expense and
heavy maintenance charges on a long transmission line through the
jungle, without eliminating the auxiliary steam plant, which is neces-
sary at all times as an emergency reserve.
Monthly surveys of Gatun dam disclosed the fact that a slight
settlement had been taking place in the dam west of the locks. When
work was started on the hydroelectric-station penstock excavation, it
was decided to take advantage of the opportunity and use the earth
for bringing this section of the dam back to grade, and 15,000 cubic
yards of earth were emplaced on the dam, to an average depth of
about 2 feet 9 inches. The remainder of the earth and rock removed,
25,700 cubic yards, was dumped on the Mindi levee.
The regulating valves were installed complete upon the following
Upper Pedro Miguel
Lower Pedro Miguel
Machines installed complete.
June 1, 1916____
Valves installed com-
Apr. 1, 1916.
Gatun lower east level.....
Gatun middle east level...
Gatun upper east level____
Gatun lower west level____
Gatun middle west level...
Gatun upper west level____
Pedro Miguel west level___
Pedro Miguel east level____
Mirafiores lower east level.
Mirafiores upper east level.
Mirafiores lower west level.
Mirafiores upper west level
Dates of completion.
Apr. 1, 1916.
Mav 1, 1916.
June 1, 1916.
Aug. 1, 1916.
Oct. 1, 1916.
Nov. 1, 1916.
May 1, 1917.
June 1, 1917.
Mav 1, 1916.
Arrangements are being made to install new fender timbers at
lower Mirafiores locks. The upper wooden buffers are in fair condi-
tion, but the lower set which are immersed at high tide are rotting
badly and have to be replaced.
During the year the mechanical division completed the construction
of four towing locomotives for the locks, these machines being the
same as those now in service except that the cabs have been increased
in height to allow the operators a better view of the vessels being
BACKFILL AND GRADING.
At Mirafiores locks the filling on the lower level of the east bank
and the slope between the lower and upper levels was completed dur-
ing July, 1916. The grading of the lower west side backfill was com-
pleted in June, 1917.
At Pedro Miguel the east side backfill was completed in January,
1917, and the west side backfill in April. 1917.
In order to provide more satisfactory drainage of surface water
during heavy rains, a considerable amount of concrete drainage ditch
was constructed, as follows: 1,800 feet on the east backfill at Pedro
Miguel, in April, 1917; 750 feet on the east backfill at Mirafiores, in
April, 1917; and 2,000 feet on the west backfill at Mirafiores in June,
During the year a committee was appointed to determine upon the
proper mechanical and electrical spare parts to be held in stock for
the locks, together with a determination of the maximum and mini-
mum number of such spares which shall be carried on hand.
Arrangements have been made to take over the Corozal cement shed
for use in storing the heavy spare parts for the lock machines, as
well as spare gates and valves.
Thirty-nine United States requisitions were issued during the year,
21 of them having been filled to date, the material on the balance
being in process of manufacture.
During the year all submerged valves, gates, fixed irons and steel
work at Pedro Miguel lock were coated with Navy bituminous com-
pound. The following is the report on the dates of completion of this
Pedro Miguel lock.All the work at Pedro Miguel, with the exception of the
work on the interior of the miter gates and on rising stem valves Nos. 334 and
335, was done by the lock forces. The work on the interior of the miter gates
was done by the American Bitumastic Enamels Company at the time the con-
struction work on the gates was completed, and they also touched up this work
at the time we had the chambers uuwatered for our work. The work on rising
stem valves Nos. 33-1 and 335 was done by the contractor in March, 1916.
Navy Department bituminous solution and enamel were used in connection
with our work on all parts except gate No. 51, on which Navy Department
bituminous cement was used. Analyses of the solution, enamel, and cement
DRAINS FOR BACKFILLS.
PAINTING LOCK GATES AND VALVES.
For 1,000 pounds of solution:
Paving asphalt_____________________________________________per cent__51. 21
Trinidad asphalt______________________________________________do____14. 25
Val-de-Travers asphalt_________________________________________do____14. 25
Slacked lime__________________________________________________do____ 1.99
The following shows the work in detail at Pedro Miguel:
Miter gate No. Interior completed (by contractor). Interior touched up (by contractor). Upstream side completed. Downstream side completed. Bottom completed.
50 Mar. 31,1913 Mav 7,1917 May 12,1917 Apr. 4,1917 Mav 16,1917
51 .....do........ .....do........ May 11,1917 .....do........ Do.
52........................... .....do........ Mav 23,1917 Mav 22,1917 Jan. 31,1917 May 26,1917
R3 __________________ Jan. 31,1913 ....:do........ .....do........ .....do........ Do.
54 Aug. 1,1913 Apr. 5,1917 Mar. 26,1917 Apr. 29,1917 Apr. 2,1917
55 .....do........ Apr. 3,1917 Mar. 27,1917 Apr. 24,1917 Apr. 3,1917
56 Dec. 23,1913 Jan. 31,1917 Jan. 23,1917 Feb. 14,1917 Jan. 30,1917
57 .....do........ .....do........ Jan. 17,1917 .....do........ Do.
Sept. 9,1913 Apr. 16,1917 Apr. 2,1917 Apr. 25,1917 Apr. 11,1917
59 .....do........ .....do........ Mar. 29,1917 .....do........ Do.
60 Dec. 30,1913 Feb. 3,1917 Jan. 29,1917 Feb. 19,1917 Feb. 5,1917
61 .....do........ Jan. 31,1917 Jan. 20,1917 .....do........ Do.
Oct. 10,1913 Apr. 13,1917 Mar. 30,1917 Mar. 25,1917 Mar. 21,1917
63 .....do........ .....do........ do........ .....do........ Apr. 21 1917
64 Dec. 30,1913 Feb. 6,1917 Jan. 16,1917 Feb. 19,1917 Feb. 18,1917
65 .....do........ .....do........ .....do........ .....do........ Feb. 8,1917
66 Sept. 9,1913 Apr. 11,1917 Apr. 6,1917 Mar. 24,1917 Apr. 20,1917
67 .....do........ Apr. 18,1917 .....do........ .....do........ Do.
68 Dec. 29,1913 Feb. 7,1917 Feb. 3,1917 Feb. 17,1917 Jan. 25,1917
69 .....do........ Feb. 3,1917 Jan. 17,1917 .....do........ Do.
70 June 15,1913 Apr. 9,1917 Apr. 26,1917 Mar. 30,1917 Apr. 16,1917
71 .....do........ Apr. 12,1917 .....do....... .....do....... Do.
72 ....................... Feb. 13,1917 Feb. 5,1917 Feb. 19,1917 Jan. 18,1917 Feb. 1,1917 Jan. 18,1917 Jan. 26,1917 .....do.......
73.. .................. .....do........
RISING STEM VALVES.
Valve Fixed irons Valve Fi\-ed iron;
Valve No. completed. completed. \ alve No. completed. completed.
312.................. Apr. 24,1917 Apr. 24,1917 326.................. Apr. 7,1917 Apr. 7,1917
313.................. Apr. 17,1917 Apr. 17,1917 327.................. Apr. 17,1917 Apr. 18,1917
314 Apr. 19,1917 Apr. 19,1917 328.................. Apr. 7,1917 Apr. 7,1917
315 Apr. 23,1917 Apr. 25,1917 329.................. Apr. 13,1917 Apr. 13,1917
316 Feb. 13,1917 Feb. 14,1917 330.................. Tan. 26,1917 Jan. 26,1917
317 ... Feb. 10,1917 Feb. 10,1917 331.................. Feb. 15,1917 Feb. 16,1017
318 Feb. 3,1917 Feb. 3,1917 332.................. Anr. 12,1917 Apr. 13,1917
319.................. Jan. 27,1917 Jan. 27,1917 333.................. Apr. 21,1917 Apr. 21,1917
320 Apr. 13,1917 Apr. 13,1917 Mar. 22,1916 Mar. 22,1916
321..... Apr. 18,1917 Apr. 20,1917 335.................. Mar. 7,1916 Mar. 7,1916
322.................. Fc>b. 13,1917 Feb. 14,1917 336.................. Jan. 26,1917 Jan. 26.1917
323.................. Feb. 10,1917 Feb. 11,1917 337.................. Feb. 2,1917 Feb. 2,1917
Valve No. Date completed. Valve No. Date completed.
Apr. 27,1917 325.................................. Feb. 18,1917
Valve No. Date completed. Valve No. Date completed.
600 ............. Apr. 17,1917 Jan. 29,1917 Apr. 16,1917 Feb. 13,1917 Apr. 17,1917 Jan. 29,1917 Apr. 17,1917 Jan. 30,1917 Apr. 16,1917 Jan. 30,1917 1 610.................................. Apr. 17,1917 Jan. 29,1917 Apr. 16,1917 Jan. 30,1917 Apr. 17,1917 Jan. 29,1917 Apr. 17,1917 Jan. 30,1917 Apr. 16,1917 Jan. 30,1917
001 1 611..................................
(,;)'_' 1 612..................................
001 ..............,....... 614..................................
606 ................... 616..................................
607 ...................... 617..................................
60S ............... 618..................................
60!) ............. 1 619..................................
Bulkhead. Date completed. Bulkhead. Date completed.
East chamber ......... April 28,1917 West chamber...................... Feb. 18,1917
Mirafiores locks.The work at Mirafiores locks was done by the American
Bitumastic Enamels Company, under contract, with a five-year guarantee. All
the cleaning of the parts, however, with the exception of the cleaning of the
miter gates, was done by the lock forces. The contractor used its own product,
analysis of winch follows, this being taken from data submitted by it:
Analysis of bitumastic enamel.
Softens at_____________________________________________________F__ ISO
Flows at_______________________________________________________F__ 220
Loss at 100 C, light hydrocarbons_________________________per cent__ 0. 50
Volatile combustible matter___________________________________do____ 48. 40
Fixed carbon_________________________________________________do____ 32.40
Ash, mineral matter__________________________________________do____ 18. 70
Sulphur______________________________________________________do____ 0. 94
Nitrogen_____________________________________________________do____ 0. 95
Acetone solublepetrolenes________________________________per cent 44. So
Chloroform solubleasphaltenes________________________________do---- 21. 50
Total bitumen__________________________________________do____ 6G. 30
Nonbituminous organic matter_________________________________do---- 15.00
Inorganic mineral matter_________________________------------do____ IS. 70
Analysis of bitumastic solution.
Hydrocarbons, volatile at 100 C____________________________per cent-- 32. 45
Hydrocarbons, volatile at over 100 C__________________________do---- 50. 49
Fixed carbon_________________________________________________do____ 17.02
Ash, chiefly iron oxide_________________________________________do____ 0. 04
Specific gravity at 25 C____________________________________________ 1.1055
Petrolenes, soluble in acetone_______________________________per cent__ 86. 00
Asphaltenes, soluble in chloroform_____________________________do____ 6.09
Organic matter_______________________________________________do____ 7. 87
Mineral matter_______________________________________________do____ 0. 04
The following shows the dates of completion on the various parts of the
miter gates at Mirafiores locks:
Miter fate No.
July 17,191 ~
RISING STEM VALVES.
Aug. IS, 1916
> Touched up July 27, 1916.
'Touched up July 25, 1916.
'Touched up Aug. 1, 1916.
* Touched up May 19, 1916.
6 Touched up Mav 10, 1916.
Touched up Nov. 22, 1916.
' Touched up Nov. 27, 1910.
Valve No. Date completed. Valve No. Date completed.
----- 42-1 ...................... Apr. 16,1916 425.................................. Aug. 12,1916
Valve No. Date completed. Valve No. Date completed.
700 ...................... Mar. 24,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 24,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 24,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 24,1916 July 22,1916 Mar. 24,1916 July 22,1916 Mar. 23,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 23,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 23,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 23,1916 Julv 22,1916 Mar. 21,1916 July 22,1916 720.................................. May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 Mav 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 Mav 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 27,1916 May 10,1916 Nov. 25,1916
701 ............ 721..................................
704..... ..................... 724..................................
706. ............... 726..................................
707 ................ 727..................................
708 .................. 728..................................
709 ................ 729..................................
710 .................. 730..................................
711 ................... 734..................................
715. ................ 735..................................
718..... ... | 738..................................
All screens completed.
Bulkhead. Date completed. Bulkhead. Date completed.
Upper level cast side............... Mar. 24,1916 Upper level, west side............... July 22 1916
Lower level east side............... June 15,1916 Lower level, west side............. Nov. 25,1916
LOCKS DIVISION OPERATING FORCE.
Mirafiores locks. Pedro Miguel lock. Gatun locks. Total gold force. Mirafiores locks. Pedro Miguel lock. Gatun locks. Total silver force
I 50 28 50 128 272 174 268 714
4!) 29 59 137 213 169 203 585
45 34 58 137 207 156 242 605
46 33 56 135 223 155 207 585
47 30 57 134 229 162 206 597
45 31 59 135 229 166 215 610
,37 47 60 144 198 280 281 759
39 46 60 145 208 257 279 744
41 43 59 143 229 297 237 763
38 51 58 147 213 279 247 739
44 39 60 143 231 180 218 629
45 33 59 137 273 211 212 6%
43.8 37 57.9 138.7 227 207 234.6 668.8
Following are extracts from reports of the lock superintendents
covering further details of operation and maintenance of the locks:
Capt. T. H. Dillon, United States Army, as superintendent, continued in charge
of the work until March 5, 1917, when he was transferred to other duties. Capt.
E. J. Atkisson, United States Army, assistant superintendent, and Mr. E. D.
Stillwell, electrical supervisor, were appointed superintendent and assistant
superintendent, respectively, on that date. Mr. C. W. Roberts was promoted to
the position of electrical supervisor. On April 15, 1917, Capt. Atkisson was
relieved from duty with The Panama Canal, and Mr. E. D. Stillwell was ap-
pointed superintendent. The position of assistant superintendent was filled by
the appointment of Mr. H. M. Thomas on May 1, 1917. Mr. T. E. Heslin con-
tinued as mechanical supervisor until his resignation, which became effective
June 12, 1917. This position was not filled at the end of the year. The re-
mainder of the organization continued in effect as in the preceding year, except
for an increase in the number of locomotive operators. The personnel of our
organization has changed very rapidly during the year, due to transfers and
resignations, and as a result we have had to train a large number of men for the
position of locomotive operator. The same system of training the new operators
by one man has continued in effect with very good results.
One chamber at a time has been out of service for a considerable period, due
to painting of gates and inspection of valves and culverts, so that saving of
water by cross filling has not been done to any extent. It has also been the
practice to use only one chamber for lockages at a time, so that a change in the
direction of lockages wastes considerable water.
The same system of operation in effect the past year was continued with only
minor changes in order to obtain safer operation. There have been no serious
delays or accidents to ships while passing through the locks.
The largest ship locked through to date was the steamship Minnesota, north-
bound, on February 27, 1917. The length of this ship is 622 feet, beam 73 feet,
and a fresh-water draft of 26 feet 3 inches forward and 28 feet aft. She was
handled without difficulty by six locomotives. The time of the lockage was 1
hour and 14 minutes, a single culvert being used, except in the lower lock.
In general, with a number of ships bound in the same direction and following
in close order, tandem, or follow-up, lockages are made depending on the size
of ships. Tandem lockages are usually made when ships are waiting at the
approach walls when the combined length of the two ships does not exceed 720
feet, with the larger of the two less than 450 feet. In case the over-all length
of the two ships is greater than 720 feet follow-up lockages are made, usiug
four locomotives on each ship if they are under 450 feet in length.
In general, with ships 360 feet or under in length, four locomotives are used.
On ships over 360 feet in length six locomotives are used. When follow-up or
tandem lockages are to be made four locomotives may be used on ships up to
450 feet in length. On ships over 450 feet in length six locomotives are used.
The above rules apply to normal ships. In individual cases the lock pilots
are authorized to call for more locomotives, and therefore cut out tandem
lockages when, in their judgment, conditions for safe operation require it. At
present we are limited in making tandem and follow-up lockages by having
only four locomotives available on each side wall.
A complete set of instructions has been issued covering the maintenance on
all the different lock-operating machines, so that in certain periods of the year
all machines are thoroughly overhauled, if necessary, in addition to the regular
inspection, lubrication, and general maintenance. In this way no important
work on any machine is overlooked.
Only minor changes have been made on any machine, and these were made
for the purpose of better lubrication of certain parts of machines and to
One of the most important changes made has been the installation of
grease cups on the top and bottom disks on the locomotives in order to lubri-
RKPORT OF F.XOIXKKR OF MAI NT FN AXCE.
cate the friction disk. This has resulted in great Improvement and more
reliability in the friction disk, which is adjusted to slip at 2">.000 pounds. The
friction on being tested rarely shows a variation of more than 2,000 pounds from
the normal, and this has practically done away with the breaking of locomo-
tive cables during lockages.
A summary of the most important work on the various machines is as
Locomotives.Manufactured and installed new coiling and control fusr> boxes
on all locomotives. The original fuse boxes installed were badly warped and
broken. Installed spring-locking devices on traction clutch levers on all ma-
chines. Cut inspection sliding doors back of switch panels, both cabs, nil loco-
motives. Extended rack sections at head of steep inclines on the return
tracks, upper level, all walls, and center wall, middle and lower levels. This was
done on account of two serious accidents to locomotives due to the operators not
running far enough away from the inclines on the rack section before shifting
the traction clutches after ascending the incline. Both towing track sections
at the break in the south approach wall were realigned and lowered.
Emergency dams.Installed hinges on all girder pane"! cabinets. Installed
signal arrows, throw-out hooks for No. 1 gates, and guides for cables on gates.
Installed cut-out switches f>n No. 1 girder, both dams, in order to prevent pos-
sible jamming of girder while raising. Tlie emergency dams have been oper-
ated once each month, excepting the time when each dam was painted. The
average time of operation is about 30 minutes. Congo roofing was placed on
both operators' houses and switch houses. Formerly water leaked in through
the concrete onto the switchboards and panels.
Miscellaneous.A double-pole circuit breaker with a shunt trip was installed
in place of the main three-pole switch on the contactor panel on rising stem
valve No. 246. The purpose of this installation is to provide a positive opening
of the main line circuit in case of the limit switch failing for any reason at the
end of the stroke, or the contactors sticking in, thus allowing the valve to over-
travel and damage the machine and possibly the motor. The shunt trip circuit
of the breaker is completed by an arm attached to the crosshead making cohtad
with a small spring switch attached to the wall at the ends of the stroke of the
valve. This arrangement has worked very satisfactorily, except that the circuit
breaker occasionally opens the circuit due to the vibration of the machine and
the jar caused by the opening and closing of the contactors. This has been prac-
tically remedied by the placing of felt and rubber washers on the studs holding
the circuit breaker to the panel.
Auxiliary carbon contacts used in connection with the copper contacts on panel
contactors on one chain fender, emergency dam. and locomotive, have shown that
the maintenance can be reduced about 75 per cent if all main contactors were
equipped in this manner. It will also minimize the possibility of the contactors
A change has also been made in the exterior lighting circuit breakers in the
transformer rooms. These are provided with auxiliary carbon contacts. The
back carbon holder was so rigid that the blow caused by closing the switch
would, in a short time, break the carbons, causing frequent renewals. This has
been practically done away with by changing the back carbon holder so that it
makes a 1S0 bend and allows more spring.
A new dock was built at the northeast wing wall to provide a suitable landing
for launches and other equipment.
Three new toilets were built; one near the arches at the north end of the
locks on the east and west walls, and the other under the east emergency dam.
Concrete ventilators were placed over all transformer rooms. This has re-
sulted in a lower temperature and better air circulation.
The glasses in the deck-light slabs over the tunnels and machine rooms have
been replaced in practically all places, except those over the bull wheels of the
miter gate machines.
A small motor-driven air compressor, operated from the control house, was
installed for blowing the lockage whistle.
The old French barge, A'o. ]x<>, was overhauled and painted, new wooden
floors placed in the bottom, and bits installed. This barge is used for trans-
ferring heavy material from one side of the locks to the other.
Pump barge Xo. 16!>, with its equipment, has been placed in good operating
condition. This barge was used for pumping out the middle levels, east and
west chambers, to allow the contractor to touch up the gates below sea level.
Painting and inspection of valves, culverts, etc.Painting of the lock ma-
chines and equipment was continued throughout, the year as was necessary.
A suitable oil paint for the lock gates which are alternately exposed to the
water and air has not been found, and this has necessitated frequent painting
and retouching of the surfaces.
Four gates were divided into sections and different kinds and mixtures of
paint applied to each section. The most satisfactory was found to be the
standard red-lead mixture, composed of 28 pounds red lead, two-thirds gallon
raw linseed oil, and one-third gallon boiled linseed oil. This paint has a
glossy surface to which foreign matter does not readily adhere.
The upstream side of gate No. 25 was painted with bitumastic solution and
enamel to the full height of the gate in September, 1916. At the same time the
upstream side of gate No. 26 was painted with the Navy solution and enamel.
The bitumastic on gate No. 25 (manufactured by the American Bitumastic En-
amels Company) is in excellent condition, while the Navy paint on gate No. 26
has sagged, leaving the metal bare in a number of places where it has been ex-
posed to the sun and air.
The lock forces have painted or touched up the paint on all the gates in the
middle and upper levels in both chambers. At the same time, the American
Bitumastic Enamels Company has retouched the surfaces where their products
bad been improperly applied The work was extensive.
While the upper and middle levels were unwatered, inspections were made of
the valves and culverts. Several floor plates around the valves had become
loose and were lost and a total number of seven were replaced.
The babbitt seats on valves Nos. 249 and 233 were replaced by one of green-
heart and lignum-vita?, respectively. The side seal points on valve No. 233 were
replaced by lignum-vitse strips.
A Gravitas machine for applying a protective coating of zinc on steel and
other metals by the Schoop process was leased for one year from the Metals
Coating Company. In February, 1917, rising stem valve No. 233 with the
roller trains, valve stem, roller-train rods, guide bearing, all bolts and nuts,
were thoroughly cleaned, sandblasted, and a coating of zinc applied with the
nbove machine. A section of the downstream side of gate No. 14 below sea level
was also sandblasted and coated with zinc. Since the zinc was applied the
chamber has not been unwatered so that it is not known at this time whether
the zinc will give the desired protection to the steel parts. The success of the
process depends to a great extent on the cleaning and roughing up of the surface
by sandblasting. In the case of a valve with the numerous small parts, this is
a slow and tedious process, and it is doubtful whether it would be feasible to
apply the zinc to all underwater metallic surfaces.
It had been expected to complete the unwatering of both chambers and over-
haul all valves and paint the gates by the close of this fiscal year; but on ac-
count of being unable to secure the lock caisson until the start of the rainy
season, the work has been postponed until the next dry season.
The work to be done by the American Bitumastic Enamels Company under
their five-year guarantee in the lower lock in each chamber will be practically the
enameling of the entire surface of the gates below sea level as the barnacles
have gone through the paint to the metal to such an extent as to destroy the
covering in most places, allowing rust to form. The work on the gates already
done by the contractor in the upper and middle levels, while not completed, has
amounted to the application of about one-third of the material originally ap-
plied. This has been caused not by the failure of the material itself, but to
improper application. This was due, to a great extent, undoubtedly to the fact
that the painting was done entirely during the rainy season and the material
was applied to the damp surfaces so that the bitumastic did not properly adhere
to the metal.
Mr. R. H. Whitehead, superintendent, resigned on August 15 and Mr. Wm. R.
Holloway, assistant superintendent, was appointed superintendent in his stead.
Mr. J. C. Myrick was appointed electrical supervisor of the Pacific locks on
July 15, 1916, and was promoted to assistant superintendent on August 26, 1916.
Mr. R. S. Mills was promoted from senior control house operator to electrical
supervisor on September 1, 1916. Mr. George L. Viberg continued as mechanical
supervisor of these locks.
The general organization remained the same as for the previous fiscal year.
The headquarters of the superintendent are located at Pedro Miguel lock, and
those of the assistant superintendent at Mirafiores locks. The electrical and
mechanical supervisors divide their time between the two sets of locks as their
supervision is required. The operators are transferred back and forth between
the two sets of locks as their services are required.
Two-shift operation was maintained throughout the year, these shifts over-
lapping and covering a day from 7 a. m. to 6 p. m. at Pedro Miguel, and from
7 a. m. to 8.30 p. m. at Mirafiores. These hours take care of the traffic under
normal operating conditions. Operations are made Sundays and holidays the
same as week days, and the men are given relief days to cover this work and
overtime, although very little overtime is required.
Delays due to failure of machinery have been of negligible magnitude. There
was but one delay due to errors in operation of the lock machinery, this occur-
ring on June 25 when the upper gates in the west chamber at Mirafiores locks
were closed on the steamship Swainby while she was entering the chamber.
Damage to vessels in locking has been slight, the most frequent damage being
broken chocks, this being caused in practically every instance by the chocks
not being sufficiently strong to take the strain of the tow line.
The average time of making a lockage at Pedro Miguel is 22.2 minutes and at
Mirafiores 3G.7 minutes. This covers the period from the time the ship passes
the first chain fender until it has cleared the gates.
Drill operations of the emergency dams were made throughout the year, but
no emergency operations were necessary. There was no opportunity during the
year for the chain fenders to be given an emergency test.
The necessary mechanical and electrical repairs and painting work were car-
ried out to maintain the machinery and equipment in good condition, and the
usual amount of grass cutting was carried on in connection with the mainte-
nance of the backfill and the spaces in the lock walls.
Transformer rooms.The oil in the transformers and oil switches was tested,
and as a result all this oil at Pedro Miguel lock has been filtered and prepara-
tions have been made to carry out this same work at Mirafiores locks. All
transformer room relays were tested and reset.
Conductor slot.The concrete in the conductor slot at that portion of the slot
over the operating tunnels was coated with bitumen solution and enamel to pre-
vent water from leaking through into the wire chases or into the transformer-
Floating caisson.The floating caisson was at Balboa shops at the close of
the fiscal year 1916 undergoing repairs by the mechanical division. This work
was completed and the caisson put in operation at Mirafiores locks in Novem-
Spilhcag caisson.That portion of the spillway caisson below the water line
was coated with bitumastic solution and enamel by the American Bitumastic
Enamels Company under contract, this work being completed in July, 1916.
The bitumastic was applied for a distance of 18 feet from the bottom.
Fenders.A carload of timbers for fenders was received and work was
started at Mirafiores replacing defective timbers on the approach and wing
walls. It will be necessary to replace practically all these timbers at both sets
of locks during the next fiscal year. Similar renewals on the crib fenders will
have to be made, but no material has been received as yet for this work.
Deck lights.Glasses for the deck lights were replaced where necessary.
Application of bitumastic.The work of applying bitumastic solution and
enamel to the valves, the submerged portions of the lock gates, etc., at Mira-
fiores was completed by the contractor (the American Bitumastic Enamels Com-
pany) on January !. fill7. The floatiug caisson was towed to Pedro Miguel
lock on January 10. 1917. and installed at the lower end of the west lock.
Work was then started by the lock forces applying bitumen solution and enamel
to the valves, submerged parts of the miter gates and other submerged portions
of lock equipment. It was the original intention to have tins work done by
contract, but the contractor's price was considered excessive and it was esti-
mated that a considerable saving could be effected by the lock forces doing the
work. At Pedro Miguel the work was completed on May 26. The following
figures show a comparison of the cost as covered in the proposal of the con-
tractor and the actual cost of the work as performed by the lock forces.
Miter gates: The contractor's proposal covered a price of $0.13 per square
foot for this work, the cleaning to be done by him. The unit cost of this work
as performed by the lock forces was $0,042 per square foot. Rising stem valves:
The contractor's price was $77 per valve, covering the coating of the valve, the
removable parts and the fixed irons, the cleaning to be done by the lock
forces. The total cost of doing this work by the lock forces was $88.15 per valve,
the unit cost of cleaning amounting to $33.47, the price to compare with the
contractor's figures being $54.68 per valve. Cylindrical valves: The con-
tractor's unit price for doing this work was $25, the cleaning to be done by
the lock forces. The cost of the work as performed by the lock forces amounted
to $23.45 per valve, the cleaning amounting to $4.33 per valve. The cost of this
work as compared with the contractor's price was $19.12. Intake screens:
The contractor quoted a price of $50 per screen, the cleaning to be done by the
lock forces. The total cost of doing this work by the lock forces was $76.31
per screen, the cleaning amounting to $30.55 per screen, the price to compare
with the contractor's figure being $45.76. Nonoperating valves and center
wall culvert bulkheads: The contractor's unit price for this work was $30
for the nonoperating valves and $20 for the center wall culvert bulkheads. The
unit cost of doing this work by the lock forces was $23.46, the cleaning amount-
ing to $5.31. The cost to compare with the contractor's figure is $18.15. A
comparative statement of the costs follows:
Cost of work
if done by the
Cost of work
as done by
Miter gates (172,200 square feet)...................................
Rising stem valves (22)...........................................
Cylindrical valves (20)............................................
Intake screens (12)................................................
Nonoperating valves and center wall culvert bulkheads (2 of each)
It is estimated, therefore, that a saving of over $15,000 was effected by
the lock forces doing this work. There were other expenses, of course, in con-
nection with this work not included in the comparison, such as cost of electric
current, labor on operation of the floating caisson and pumps, diving, etc.,
which expenses to The Panama Canal would have remained the same had
the work been done by the contractor. The Navy Department bituminous
solution and enamel were used on all this work except gate No. 51, on which
gate their bituminous solution and cement were used, being applied to the
upstream and downstream sides and bottom girder for test purposes.
Rising stem valves.Twenty-two rising stem valves at Pedro Miguel lock
were given a general overhauling at the time the chambers were unwatered
for the work of applying the bituminous solution and enamel to the submerged
parts. The other two valves had been overhauled previously.
Repair pits.The work on the construction of the repair pits at Pedro Miguel
was completed in May, 1917, and at Mirafiores in April, 1917. Two pits were
constructed at Pedro Miguel, one for the east side and one for the west side:
and four pits were constructed at Mirafiores, two for each side for the two
Mess building.The work on the mess buildings was completed in July, 1916,
by the forces of the building division. These buildings provide places for
the gold and silver men to eat their lunches; and rooms were also set aside
to store cement and for paint shop.
Rising stem valves.-The work of installing the oiling devices on the rising
stem valves was completed during the year. These devices were installed for
oiling the roller trains and the submerged portions of the valves.
Railroad track.The old construction track on the backfills was gone over
and put in shape for permanent operations. This work consisted mainly in
lining up the track and raising or lowering to conform with tne level of the
backfill. This work at Pedro Miguel was completed in July, 1916, and at
Mirafiores in May, 1917.
Turnouts.During the year the turnouts for Mirafiores locks were com-
pleted, those for Pedro Miguel lock having been completed during the previous
Towing locomotives.Two new towing locomotives were received in June,
1917, from the mechanical division, which division performed the mechanical
work on them; the electrical work is being done by the lock forces.
Backfill.The grading of the west backfill at Pedro Miguel lock was com-
pleted in April, 1917, approximately 15,500 cubic yards of material having
been removed, at an approximate cost of $7,000.
The duties of the electrical division have continued the same as
The power plants, substations, transmission and distribution sys-
tems have operated satisfactorily without incident worthy of special
New 4,400-horsepower water wheels were installed at the Gatun
hydroelectric station in units 1, 2, and 3, which has increased their
capacity about 40 per cent, making a total for the station of 8,640
k. w. at 80 per cent power factor. Money is available, material has
been ordered, and construction is under way for the installation of
three additional penstocks and one additional unit (No. 4) of
4,500 k. w., which was as large as could be installed without radical
changes in building layout. The operating voltage will be changed
to 6,600 volts. Provision is being made for the addition of units
Nos. 5 and 6 whenever they are required. The capacity of the hydro-
electric station, when present changes are completed, will be 13,140
k. w., and this has necessitated corresponding changes in trans-
formers, etc. The ultimate capacity of the hydroelectric station as
now contemplated will be 22,140 k. w., which is about double our
present load and about 50 per cent over-all load immediately in
Our estimates indicate that there will be sufficient water over and
above that necessary for the maximum capacity of locks and for other
necessary purposes to provide for this power except during an ab-
normally dry season, during which time it is expected to carry the
load at Mirafiores steam plant.
The Mirafiores steam plant now consists of six steam-driven
turbogenerators, each of 1,200 k. w. capacity at 80 per cent power
factor. It is expected to operate this plant as a reserve for the
hydroelectric station in case of accident or whenever necessary to save
water. As far as can be foreseen at present, it will be more economi-
cal to maintain our reserve at this plant rather than by new hydro
projects elsewhere. It will be necessary to increase the capacity of
the steam plant, and estimates are now being prepared to do this
work in the fiscal year 1919.
The average production cost of current for power, exclusive of
depreciation at 3 per cent, was $0.005106 per k. w. h., and including
depreciation charges was $0.007301 per k. w. h. The average cost of
current for lighting, which includes maintenance of house and build-
ing lighting systems and lamp renewals, was $0.01338 per k. w. h.
There were 38 cases of power interruptions and 27 insulator fail-
ures, as against 33 and 27, respectively, for the previous year.
Plans are under way and funds are available for the installation of
a fourth disk on insulators and for installation of reverse current
relays for operation of transmission lines in parallel during the
About 185,000 feet of underground cable were laid, and complete
lighting systems were installed in 86 Army buildings, 45 Panama
Railroad buildings, and 991 apartments for canal employees.
On the railway signal system there wras only one reported false
clear aspect, and considerable improvement has been made in lessened
signal interruption and train delays compared with previous years.
There were 2,154 telephones in service on June 30, 1917, as against
1,878 on June 30, 1916. The average number of cases of telephone
trouble per day has been reduced from 13 to 8. New storage bat-
teries were installed at Colon, Pedro Miguel, and Balboa exchanges.
Plans are under way to take care of increase in telephone business by
building a new exchange at Cristobal and installing additional cable
for trans-isthmian service.
The fire-alarm system has been incorporated in the telephone
The details of the operations of the electrical division during the
fiscal year are covered in the report of the electrical engineer, which
Maj. T. H. Dillon, United States Army, Electrical Engineer.
The duties of the electrical division during the fiscal year comprised the
necessary work of design, construction, operation, and maintenance of the steam
and hydroelectric power plants, substations, transmission lines, and power-
distribution systems; municipal, street, dock, building, and house lighting sys-
tems ; the telephone, telegraph, fire-alarm, and railway block signal systems and
interlocking plants; the electric cargo-handling cranes; electric-truck storage-
battery systems; and the installation and repair of all classes of electrical
apparatus for The Panama Canal, Panama Railroad Co., Army, and Navy, and
of all departments and divisions therein.
organization and personnel.
Maj. W. H. Rose was electrical engineer until June 1, 1917, upon which date
he was relieved by Maj. T. H. Dillon. On November 29, 1916, the work was
divided into five principal divisions, as follows: Office and requisitions, Carl W.
Markham; power and transmission system, W. L. Hersh, superintendent; con-
struction and maintenance, W. L. Fey, superintendent; telephones and tele-
graph, C. L. Bleakley, superintendent; railway signal system, E. C. McDonald,
On June 30, 1917, there were 198 gold and 483 silver employees on our rolls.
Our average monthly expenditures are about $85,000, of which $72,000 consists
of work done for other departments and divisions.
office and design.
The usual miscellaneous office work was done throughout the year, including
correspondence, requisitions, reports, etc.
Plans were developed and specifications prepared for the extensions to the
hydro plant for more than doubling its capacity; for necessary changes to our
power and transmission systems resulting therefrom; for necessary extension
to underground conduit and cable distribution systems for light, power, and
telephone systems in permanent towns and Army and Navy reservations, and
for all new buildings of The Panama Canal, etc.
This division has been assisted in large measures in design and specification
by the office engineer, Mr. C. J. Embree, and the draftsmen under his charge, to
all of whom great credit is due.
report on electrical power.
Electrical power was furnished for the construction of the canal by steam
plants at Gatun, Empire, and Mirafiores. The hydroelectric plant at Gatun was
designed to replace these plants for furnishing continuous power upon the com-
pletion of canal construction work. The original installation at the hydro
consisted of three 2,000 k. w. generators at 80 per cent power factor.
The Mirafiores steam plant was continued in service as a reserve plant, and
to it were transferred the units from the Gatun steam station. The Mirafiores
steam plant now consists of six steam-driven turbines direct connected to 1,200
k. w. generators working at 80 per cent power factor and tied into the high-
tension transmission line through the Mirafiores substation. Sufficient power
is held in reserve to supply Pacific locks in case of failure of service elsewhere,
and two boilers are kept under pressure for ready service.
Due to the steady growth of the electrical load on the Isthmus, as discussed
in previous reports, the original capacity of the hydro station was insufficient,
and peak loads were carried at Mirafiores steam plant. New water wheels
were installed at Gatun, as discussed in report of 1915 and 1916, which has
increased the capacity of each of the three generators to 2,880 k. w. at 80 per
cent power factor, an increase in power of approximately 40 per cent. This
work was completed December 19, 1916, at a total cost of $16,377.^1. This
includes credit for bronze runners removed and sold as scrap.
The next step contemplated the extension of the building and the installation
of three more units. This work is now under way. Only one new unit is being
installed at the present time. In connection with this extension it was decided
to raise the voltage of the three origial units at the station by autotransformers
and make the operating voltage 6.600 on account of saving thus accomplished
in cost of necessary cables from hydro to Gatun substation. The new unit was
designed for the greatest capacity that could be gotten into the building with-
out radical changes. It consists of a General Electric Company 6,600-volt,
3-phase, 25-cycle, 4,500 k. w. (at 80 per cent power factor) generator mounted
on vertical shaft connected to 6,750 h. p. turbine furnished by the Pelton Water-
Provision had been made in the original plans for three additional pen-
stocks, and these are now being installed, so that future increases will con-
sist of purchase of new generating units and necessary switches, transformers,
On June 30 the foundations, concrete draft tubes, etc., had been placed and
erection of penstocks about 10 per cent completed. Contracts have been let for
the necessary equipment.
After the installation of the new unit there will be available at the hydro
station a capacity of 13,140 k. w., with provision for future installation of two
more units of 4,500 k. w. each, making the ultimate capacity of the hydro
station 22,140 k. w. This capacity will provide for about double the present
load and will also provide about a 50 per cent reserve over and above any
increases in load now contemplated. Further increase in capacity would
require radical change of station layout and would involve a prohibitive
It should be kept in mind that additional power can probably be produced
at the Mirafiores steam plant more cheaply than by a new project at Gatun
hydro station or by new hydraulic developments elsewhere, such as at Alha-
juela or Mirafiores.
With respect to available water supply for power purposes, it is estimated
that with all six units installed at the hydro plant and operating at about 70
per cent load factor there will be required approximately 2,600 cubic feet per
It is expected to continue the Mirafiores steam plant as a reserve and to
keep its capacity at about two-thirds that of the hydro station. This will
necessitate an increase in capacity there in the near future, for which estimates
will be submitted for 1919.
The total connected load at the end of the year was approximately 55,372 k. w.
in power and heat and 5,744 k. w. in light,
The load factor is approximately 70 per cent and the demand factor is ap-
proximately 15 per cent.
The principal loads (in k. w.) added during 1917 were:
Balboa coaling station..................
Army quarters and buildings..........
Dry Dock No. 1, Balboa................
Air compressor plant, Balboa..........
New hospital, Ancon...................
Cold storage and ice plant, Balboa.....
New restaurants, Balboa and Cristobal.
New dispensary, Ancon................
Miscellaneous municipal buildings.....
Other miscellaneous items..............
The known loads to be added in future are:
Series street lighting systems..............
Submarine charging station and aviation..
New cold storage plant, Cristobal.........
New town sites...........................
Storage battery charging station, Cristobal.
Miscellaneous municipal buildings.........
New air compressor plant, Balboa.........
New air compressor, Cristobal.............
Permanent Army posts....................
Table showing monthly outputs in kilowatt hours:
Net output in kilowatt Per cent
hours. loss in
Total net transmis-
generated sion based
Gatun hydro Mirafiores power. on total
station. steam station. delivered power.
3,672,750 +153,090 3,825,840 12.56
3,900,890 +291,444 4,192,334 14.25
3,319,S60 + 389,280 3,709,140 13.9
3,455,470 + 475,840 3,931,310 13.5
4,02S,220 +212,480 4,240,700 14.85
4 130,640 55,285 4,075,355 16.6
4,235,000 -133,140 4,101,860 13.7
4,282,400 -152,135 4,130.265 14
4,582,100 -141,860 4,440,240 14.6
4,401,600 79,650 4,321,9.50 14.2
4,810,400 40,790 4,769,610 16.8
4,772,300 -122,640 4,649,660 16
4,132,620 4,199,020 14.6
Note.Mirafiores steam station is run as a reserve station and one generator is always floated on the
line to automatically pick up load. It runs most of the time as an overexcited synchronous condenser
for power-factor correction.
The following table shows the cost of power in its various states of dis-
tribution. Cost figures are based on delivery to consumer and not on the net
amount actually generated.
Totals for fiscal voar 19KM7. Average per month. Average cost per kilowatt hour.
Net consumption (kilowatt hours)............................. 43,743,902 3,645,325
Cost of operation and maintenance, Mirafiores steam plant...... Cost of maintenance, transmission lines......................... Total cost of current for power distribution...............
$27,525.80 72,405.07 52,629.30 19,965.11 50,866.59 96,000.00 $2,293.82 6,033.76 4,385.77 1,663.76 4,238.88 8,000.00 $0.000629 .001655 .001203 .000456 .001163 002195
319,391.87 26,615.99 .007301
Cost of maintenance, house-fighting system, including lamp renewals.............................................
$50,129.40 $4,177.45 $0.006079
Plate No. 2 shows the average and maximum loads in kilowatts for the week
ending June 30, 1917, as compared to the same period in 1916.
substations and transmission lines.
The substations operated satisfactorily during the year. There were no fail-
ures of high-tension service due to failure or improper operation of substation
The following changes and additions to equipment have been made:
Transferred one 2,667 k. v. a. 44,000-volt transformer from Gatun substation
to Cristobal substation and installed two 4,000 k. v. a. 44,000-volt transformers
at Gatun substation. This increased the capacity of Cristobal substation from
5,334 k. v. a. to 8,001 k. v. a. and of Gatun substation from 8,001 k. v. a. to
13,334 k. v. a.
One additional feeder equipment was installed in Balboa and one in Cristobal
substations to provide for new outgoing 2,200-volt feeders.
The operation of the 44,000-volt transmission line has been fairly satisfactory.
Plate No. 3 shows the number and causes of power interruptions during the
year. Plate No. 4 shows the locations and dates of insulator failures during
Since April 2, 1917, the spare transmission line has been kept charged at all
Plans are under way for the installation of a fourth disk on each insulator
and for the operation of the transmission lines in parallel.
There were 3 cases of ground wire breaking during the year, as compared with
10 in 1916 and 13 in 1915.
There were two interruptions to service during the year, due to defects in thte
distribution system cable, one being caused by moisture in a piece of 2,500-volt
3-conductor, lead-covered cable, and the other caused by the parting of the sub-
marine cable supplying power to Fort Sherman.
A total of 185,624 feet of new cable of various sizes and voltages was laid
during the year; 38,510 duct feet of fiber duct and 78,672 duct feet of vitrified
tile duct were placed, covering extensions to the system to provide for new
town sites and various power and light loads added or increased during the
year. The 2,200-volt overhead feeder from Mirafiores substation to Paraiso
was removed, leaving a 11,000-volt overhead line feeding the Army camps on
the west side, and the dredging division relay pumps in the Cut, a 2,200-volt
overhead line feeding the Balboa relay pumps, and some overhead lines at
Mount Hope used for miscellaneous installations as practically the only over-
head lines left in service, all the main distribution systems being underground.
Complete lighting systems were installed in 86 Army buildings, 45 Panama
Canal and Panama Railroad buildings, and 991 apartments for gold and silver
employees during the year. All wiring was laid in galvanized-iron conduit,
both in concrete and frame buildings, and substantial fixtures were used through-
out. Following are some of the principal items used In this work; 624,585 feet
of conduit, galvanized iron, all sizes; 294,731 conduit fittings, galvanized iron,
various; 27,986 conduit fittings, current-carrying parts; 1,657,203 feet of wire,
rubber-covered, 0-600 volts, all sizes; 14,220 fixtures, light brass, various.
A total of 86 new series incandescent street lamp-posts, including combination
fire-alarm posts, were installed, requiring 22.450 feet of No. 6 single-conductor
2,500-volt armored cable. The installation of street lights in the New Cristobal
town site was begun but is not included in the above figures.
The total number of incandescent lamps in service on the Canal Zone of all
sizes on June 30, 1917, was approximately 57,957.
The average number of incandescent lamps renewed per month was 10.000.
The number of electric appliances in use by Panama Canal employees in
quarters (Army not included) was: Electric flatirons. 1,663; electric hot plates,
percolators, toasters, etc.. 798; small fans, sewing-machine motors, vibrators,
etc., 150; electric ranges (average 5 k. w. each), 60.
armature repairs, etc.
The following jobs were bandied in the armature winding and repair shop
during the year:
Motors and armatures rewound, 1 h. p. to 500 h. p________________________183
Transformers repaired and rewound____________________________________ 56
Small fans and electric appliances repaired______________________________127
Magnetos and miscellaneous repairs____________________________________117
Manufacturing jobs, switchboard panels, etc_____________________________147
This does not include repairs done in the field at various points, but covers
only such jobs as required complete rewinding and shopwork.
railway signal system.
There were 2,474.210 arm movements with 115 responsible signal interrup-
tions, compared with 199 for 1916, and 12 nonresponsible signal interruptions,
compared witli 43 for 1916. and 131 train-minutes delay, compared with 721
for the preceding year. There was one false clear operation of signal for
2,474,210 arm movements. There was an average of one failure per 21,515
arm movements in 1917, compared with one failure per 14,685 ann movements
in 1916. The average delay to trains per signal failure was 37 minutes.
There was one reported false clear aspect and one reported false caution
aspect on the 118 automatic, 16 semiautomatic, 14 power-operated, and 30
mechanical signals during the fiscal year 1917.
The mechanical interlocking plant at West Leg was removed in the early
part of September. The main line crossover at this location was lemoved.
On the spur leading to the quartermaster's shop a hand-throw derail was
installed. The main line northward and southward signals of this plant were
made to work automatically. There was one new automatic signal style "B"
installed on the northward main at a point opposite the southward signal,
formerly home signal for plant. There was a main line crossover installed
just north of Tivoli spur and a hand-throw derail installed on this spur.
During February, this year, the remaining overhead wires from old West
Leg interlocking plant to San Miguel crossing were removed and nine conductor
Kerite cable installed.
Derails on both ends of passing sidings at New Culebra and Bohio were
removed. The main line crossover at New Culebra was remove 1. A new house
track and spur were installed at New Culebra, and a hand-throw derail in-
stalled on the south end of this house track.
Two main line spurs for the building division were installed, one at Pedro
Miguel and one at Red Tank. Also one automatic sigual No. 4122 moved
100 feet north, and a spur installed off the main line at this place for the new
commissary at Red Tank. Near Mindi Bridge a switch was installed for
a spur track. This was equipped with a hand-throw derail.
A Heeschen highway crossing gong is being installed on crossing at Pedro
Miguel. The interlocking plant has also been completely overhauled.
Practically all the remaining porcelain primary battery jars were replaced
by 700 heat-resisting glass, or enough for about 40 signal locations. This
makes all primary jars of the heat-resisting glass type.
The interlocking plant at Mounl Hope was overhauled.
The interlocking plant at Cristobal tower "A" was removed and track
changes made. The tracks to docks were cut in near Colon passenger station
on track over new till back of United Fruit. Company's office. The removal of
this interlocking plant made it necessary to make changes in automatic
signals between Mount Hope and Colon. Two signals were moved to new
locations, three additional automatic signals installed, one cut section moved,
and all signals rewired on this job between Colon and Mount Hope.
Some of the signal cable was meggered out. Preparations are being made t
megger out all conductors in cable and for card indexing it.
The following are the reported and investigated derailments which occurred
at mechanical interlocking plants:
Rails spreading, no fault of interlocking apparatus.
Outside interlocking plant, deJjris on track.
Disregard of dwarf signal in stop aspect.
Disregard of home signal in stop aspect.
Disregard of dwarf signal in stop aspect.
Broken flange on rock car.
Leverman threw derail under train.
Disregard of dwarf signal in stop aspect.
Derailments caused by disregarding signal in stop aspect.
Derailment caused by accident to car.....................
Derailments caused by levermen.........................
Derailments caused by de"bris on track, rails spreading...
There was damage done to interlocking apparatus by material falling from
cars while passing through interlocking plants in several instances.
There was but one derailment caused by trainmen throwing derail under
moving train at sidings and spurs.
There were 30 reported signal failures at interlocking plants. This includes
both electrical and mechanically operated signals.
Responsible signal interruptions for fiscal year ending June 30, 1017.
Exhausted primary battery: poor maintenance...............
Switch box out of adjustment; shunting track................
Poor battery; dirty connection; battery not properly set up....
Poor zinc: track battery......................................
Short circuit account of insulated joints.......................
Switch box out of adjustment; switch point in poor condition..
Bad relay contact.............................................
Loose connections on magnet coils; track relay..................
Track relay out of adjustment.................................
Broken bond wires............................................
Exhausted storage battery while removing primary battery;
Signal light out..................................................
Meter com. sticking, dirty connection; brushed high bars, etc......
Broken primary battery jars......................................
Uncertain aspect; broken slot-arm spring.........................
Open coil on control relay.........................................
Loose connection on relay coils....................................
Cable connections open............................................
Open connections on porcelain terminal...........................
Broken semaphore shaft...........................................
Discharged storage battery........................................
Pole changer; loose connection....................................
Broken split cotter on slot arm....................................
Track circuit; track resistance not properly adjusted...............
Exhausted primary battery; careless maintenance.................
Defective primary battery........................................
Responsible signal interruptions for fiscal year ending June SO, 1917Continued.
Trfick circuit t
Exhausted primary battery; poor mainte-
Switch box out otadjustment; shunting track.
Poor battery; dirty connection; battery not
properly set up.............................
Poor zinc; track battery......................
Short circuit account of insulated joints......
Switchbox out of adjustment; switch point
in poor condition...........................
Bad relay contact............................
Loose connections on magnet coils; track relay.
Track relay out of adjustment................
Broken bond wires...........................
Exhausted storage battery while removing pri-
mary battery; careless maintenance...........
Signal light out..................................
Meter com. sticking, dirty connection; brushed
high bars, etc...................................
Broken primary battery jars.....................
Uncertain aspect; broken slot arm spring........
Open coil on control relay........................
Loose connection on relay coils...................
Cable connections open...........................
Open connections on porcelain terminal..........
Broken semaphore shaft..........................
Discharged storage battery.......................
Pole changer; loose connection...................
Broken split cotter on slot arm...................
Track circuit; track resistance not properly
Exhausted primary battery; careless mainte-
Defective primary battery........................
TELEPHONES AND TELEGKAPH.
During the fiscal year 762 telephones were installed and 4S6 removed, leav-
ing in service on June 30, 1917, a total of 2,154 telephones. The average
number of telephone calls per day, obtained by peg count, was 21,042. The
average number of telephone troubles, including cases on all classes of sub-
scribers' instruments and all wire except cable, was 8 per day, as compared
with 13 per day for the last fiscal year.
There were 89,342 feet of cable of all sizes installed and 20,827 feet were re-
moved, leaving 536,763 feet in service. On this entire length of cable there
were 11 cases of trouble.
Concrete booths for train dispatchers' telephones and trans-isthmian line
patrolmen's telephones were installed along the right of way of the Panama
New storage batteries were installed at the Colon, Pedro Miguel, and Bal-
boa exchanges. New sections of switchboard were installed in the Colon and
Balboa exchanges. Work for local telephone companies in Colon and Panama,
and for the Central & South American Telegraph Company was performed dur-
ing the year, on account of destructive fires, installation of new trans-isthmian
The rapid increase in the number of telephones in use by the Army and by
pay subscribers has taxed the system to its utmost capacity. Additional cable
must be installed in the trans-isthmian line, new sections must be added to the
Balboa main frame, and a new exchange must be provided at Cristobal in the
The usual inspection and maintenance of this system was carried on during
the year. Several extensions were made to the system, including an exten-
sion to Balboa shops, to Pier No. 7, Colon, to the new town site of- Balboa, and
the New Cristobal town site. Experiments were made with various methods of
applying red letters and red bands to the street lighting globes on the combina-
tion fire-alarm posts, but entirely satisfactory results have not as yet been ob-
The construction plan outlined in the report of the resident
engineer for the fiscal year 1916 was carried out during this fiscal
year with very satisfactory results.
The increasing cost of cement, lumber, and steel has made neces-
sary the consideration of reinforced concrete columns, beams, and
girder construction with hollow concrete block panels and partition
walls. A few low buildings of this character were designed, aaid
preliminary costs indicate a considerable saving. The manufacture
of concrete blocks continued throughout the year with satisfactory
The details of the operations of the building division during the
fiscal year are covered in the report of the resident engineer which
Hartley Rowe, Resident Engineer.
The following changes were made in the organization of the division during
Mr. George M. Wells, resident engineer, resigned on February 3, 1917, and
the undersigned was appointed in his stead.
Assistant Engineer T. C. Morris was made engineering assistant to the
resident engineer effective December 1, 1916.
The Central District was consolidated with the Southern District on May 1,
1917, with Mr. J. B. Fields, superintendent, in charge of the district. The con-
struction of the submarine base at Coco Solo was placed in charge of Mr. C. C.
Snedeker on June 19, 1917. The Northern District remained in charge
of Superintendent James Cosgrove.
Mr. Samuel M. Hitt continued in charge of the architectural designing work.
The following table shows the buildings authorized by Congress for The
Panama Canal and for the Army, and buildings authorized by the Panama
Railroad, on which construction work was performed during the fiscal year.
PANAMA CANAL BUILDINGS.
Ancon Hospital dispensary........
Ancon Hospital laboratory........
Ancon Hospital ward group, in-
cluding main stairway.
Hog barn, Corozal farm...........
Morgue, Colon Hospital...........
Garage and quarters, Colon Hos
Quarters for doctors, Colon Hos
Dispensary, Pedro Miguel........
Office building, dentists and sani-
Motor truck garage, Ancon........
I. 2-story and
D. 2-story and
THE PANAMA CANAL.
PANAMA CANAL BUILDINGSContinued.
4-family quarters, Balboa.........
1-family quarters, Ancon-Balboa..
4-family quarters, Ancon-Balboa..
1-family quarters, Cristobal.......
4-family quarters, Cristobal.......
1-family quarters, Pedro Miguel ..
4-family quarters, Pedro Miguel...
12-family silver quarters...........
Hotels,Cristobal, Balboa, Ancon..
Balboa shops, mess and pattern-
Grand stand, Balboa.............
School buildings, Cristobal, Gatun,
Pedro Miguel, Ancon, Balboa...
Ancon Hospital administration
J. 1-story. .
I. 1 and 2-storv
PANAMA RAILROAD BUILDINGS.
Freight and baggage building.....
Freight and baggage building ex-
Electric charging station..........
1 Barracks, company...............
2 Noncominission quarters..........
4 Field officers' quarters............
5 Commanding officers' quarters----
7 Barracks, band...................
8 Barracks, special..................
9 Family quarters..................
10 Lieutenants' bachelor quarters----
12 Barracks, company...............
13 Headquarters building............
14 Noncommission quarters..........
16 Commanding officer's quarters____
17 Field officers' quarters............
20 Lieutenants' bachelor quarter____
21 Band barracks....................
23 Barracks, company...............
24 Captains' quarters................
25 Field officers'quarters............
26 Noncommission quarters..........
27 Lieutenants' bachelor quarters____
fort de lesseps.
28 Noncommission quarters..........
29 Captains' quarters................
30 Field officers'quarters............
31 Headquarters, barracks, storehouse
D. 2-story and
D. 2-story and
D. 2-story and
D. 2-story and
D. 2-story and
2 A. 2-story
1 A. 2-story
1 A. 2-story
1 A. 2-story
B. 2-story and
B. 2-story and
July, 1916 100 $75,565.86
Julv, 1916 92 30,731.36
Oct., 1916 77 42,912.34
Oct., 1916 99 66,095.21
Oct., 1916 100 17,140.35
Nov., 1916 99 36,972.93
Dec, 1916 100 16,678.06
Dec, 1916 100 51,S24.54
Apr., 1917 100 2,706.08
Mar., 1917 60 23,869.61
May, 1917 60 2,661.83
Oct., 1916 100 123,944.33
Oct.. 1916 95 32,656.61
Dec, 1916 95 30,257.22
Mar., 1917 95 40,027.02
! Mar.. 1917 100 6,842.38
! Mar., 1917 90 20,029.38
Mar., 1917 100 6,816.00
Mar., 1917 60 42,771.60
1 Mar., 1917 90 12,820.82
Feb., 1917 100 8,119.18
June, 1917 10 4,496.92
Oct., 1916 100 50,136.00
Oct., 1916 100 13,957.26
Oct., 1916 100 9,241.28
Nov., 1916 100 8,035.77
Feb., 1917 100 12,281.02
Dec, 1916 50 31,556.43
Dec, 1916 80 47,716.95
Jan., 1917 80 28,453.64
Jan., 1917 40 47,001.09
REPORT OF ENGINEER OF MAINTENANCE.
ORDNANCE DEPARTMENT BUILDINGS.
1 1-family quarters..................
3 Stablo and carriage building........
4 Commanding officer's quarters.....
5 Captains' quarters.................
6 4-family noncommission quarters...
7 Shop building......................
8 Double magazine building..........
10 Current issue and reserve store-
11 Toilet building....................
M. 1-story; part
B. 2-story and
B. 2-story and
B. 2-story and
Date started. Per cent completed, June 30, 1917. Cost to June 30, 1917.
Jan., 1917 100 $25,930.65
Feb., 1917 70 16,661.65
Feb., 1917 90 2,732.45
Feb., 1917 40 8,530.03
Feb., 1917 45 9,813.24
Feb., 1917 100 12,406.78
Feb., 1917 40 7,514.44
Feb., 1917 100 16,207.20
Feb., 1917 80 6,488.57
Feb., 1917 40 28,905.68
Feb., 1917 90 1,115.81
In addition to the work outlined in the above tables a considerable number
of buildings were erected for the different divisions and the Panama Railroad
Company, and as the necessity for guarding the Canal Zone became evident
various barracks and shelters were authorized and constructed. Wire fences
were constructed around the locks at Gatun, Pedro Miguel, and Mirafiores, the
powder magazines at Gamboa and New Culebra, and the substations at Cristobal,
Gatun, Mirafiores, and Balboa.
Other items of special work performed by the division consisted of addi-
tions and alterations to buildings 6, 7, and 9, Balboa shops; alterations to
Balboa and Cristobal commissaries; the construction of Young Mens Christian
Association buildings at Paraiso and Cristobal; and repairs and alterations to
the administration building at Aneon for use as a headquarters' building for
United States troops.
In addition to the regular work of the designing forces for The Panama
Canal they have been called upon to furnish preliminary plans and estimates
for cantonment construction for Army troops and for the proposed permanent
posts for mobile troops on the Canal Zone.
The following table gives the comparative unit cost of the principal build-
ings completed during the past fiscal year:
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Type 20. staff, captains' quarters,
Hand barracks (1). Fort Sherman...
Type 17-rev. (ordnance) (1), Fort
Barracks (2), Fort Randolph.......
Type 20, captains' quarters (2),
Type 8, field officers' quarters (1),
Type 14-rov., noncommissioned
officers' quarters (1), Fort Ran-
6-set lieutenants' bachelor quarters
(1), Fort Randolph.
Type 17-rev. (ordnance) (1), Fort
A. 2-story; 1-family 6,671.17 89.98 79.94 646.81 245.00
8,119.IS 1,077.10 243.83 836.13 378.68
2,274.96 70.68 28.67 289.14 156.36
A. 2-story; 109 men. 25,068.00 1,512.23 616.96 2,586.06 1,013.90
A. 2-story; 1-family. 6,978.63 563. 70 150.15 633.78 508.87
A. 2-story; 1-family. 9,241. 2S 621.59 214.23 623.27 532.00
A. 2-story; 4-family. 8,035. 77 598.72 67.13 995. 52 786.43
A. 2-story........... 12,281.02 673.34 512.83 1,003. 28 1,071.70
A. 1-story; 1-family. 2,056. 70 26.38 32.88 260.21 154.01
1,866.65 3,702.79 5,569.44 46,474 .1198
3,163.52 2,419.92 5,583.44 98,280 0568
598.92 1,131.19 1,730.11 23,197 .0745
6,137.22 13,039.03 19,176. 25 294,424 .0651
2,273.98 2,763.11 5,037.09 46,474 .1083
3,302.62 3,862.05 7,164.67 71,904 .0996
1,677.86 3,862.82 5,540.68 60,412 .0917
3,831.29 5,188. 58 9,019.87 118,064 .0763
576.61 859. 41 1,436.02 23,197 .0619
DESCRIPTION OF VARIOUS CLASSES OF BUILDINGS.
Class A.Frame; wood post foundations; asphalt shingle roof.
Cfass B.Reinforced concrete exterior walls; wood lloors; wood partitions; Spanish
red tile on frame roof.
Class C.Cement block and stucco walls; wood floors; Spanish red tile on frame roof.
Class 1). -Reinforced concrete bearing walls and floors; cement block partitions;
cement plaster, oii painted; Spanish red tile on frame roof.
Cfass E.Cement block and stucco walls; concrete floors; Spanish red tile on frame
Class F.Reinforced concrete walls and floor; steel roof trusses; Spanish red tile roof;
Class G. lieiuforced concrete floor; block and stucco walls; asphalt shingles on frame
Class H.Two feet thick reinforced concrete walls, floor, and roof: double steel doors.
Class I.Reinforced concrete bearing waifs; cement block partition; cement plaster;
oil painted; tile floor and base; Spanish red tile on frame roof.
Class J.Reinforced concrete bearing walls and partitions; cement plaster; enamel
painted; tile floors and walls; Spanish red tile on steel trusses.
Class K.Reinforced concrete walls and floors; steel roof trusses; corrugated asbestos
roof; steel doors.
Class L.Structural steel columns, trusses; cement block partftions; corrugated
Class M.Reinforced concrete foundations and walls; asphalt shingles on frame roof.
Class N.Reinforced concrete foundations and waits; Spanish red tiie on frame rooL
The following is a description of some of the principal buildings constructed
or in the course of construction during the past fiscal year:
Five permanent school buildings have been erected during the past year and
will be ready for occupancy the day of the opening of the fall term, October 1,
The type of construction of all these buildings is reinforced concrete exterior
walls, and in most instances the interior walls, the remaining being hollow con-
crete blocks, cement plastered, and reinforced concrete floor slabs and stairs
throughout. Finished floors in classrooms, teachers' rooms, libraries, offices,
and assembly room are select narrow yellow pine, on wood sleepers buried in
concrete. Finished floors in entrance halls, interior corridors, and libraries are
6-inch square vitreous red tile. The toilet finished floors are vitreous ceramic
white-mat tile, and the toilets have also white enameled tile wainscots 5 feet 10
inches high. Stairs have patented safety treads and reinforced concrete newels
and handrails, capped with mahogany, and have wrought-iron square balusters.
Roofs are red tile, supported on wood framework. The general classrooms in
all five schools are 21 feet by 32 feet 6 inches, accommodating 40 pupils, and
each room is lighted by three concentrated window openings, each 6 feet 5
inches by 8 feet 2 inches, which admit light over the pupil's left shoulder. Con-
trary to the usual custom on the Isthmus, hinged sash were not installed, but
the northern practice of using vertical sliding sash was employed, this being
necessary to allow the use of interior shades for protection from the sun, which
would flood the room through such large openings concentrated in one wall.
For ventilation small, high windows are generally placed in the opposite wall,
opening on a corridor. The schools are not screened, as it is not proposed to
use them at night.
All the schools are fully equipped with modern toilet fixtures and marble
stalls, and each classroom with bookcases, wardrobes, umbrella racks, and slate
blackboards. Each schools has a belfry and bellbubbling water supply cooled
from a central plant, fire line and hose, fire-alarm system, call gong, telephone
period ringing system, and semi-indirect illumination. Walls and ceilings will
be painted in light warm tints. Following is a description of the five buildings:
Balboa School.The building is 117 feet 8 inches by 151 feet 4 inches, three
stories high, hollow-square plan, contains 25 standard classrooms, 1 high-school
assembly room 32 feet 7 inches by 73 feet 4 inches, 1 laboratory, 3 libaries, 1
supervisor's room, 2 principals' rooms, 2 teachers' rooms, 11 toilets, 3 jaintors'
rooms, 5 storage rooms, 1 lunch shelter 29 feet 9 inches by 73 feet 4 inches, 1
dry room, 1 bathroom, and 2 closets; a total of 59 rooms, besides an interior
patio 57 feet 4 inches by 64 feet 10 inches, surrounded by a three-story porch
averaging 9 feet wide, and an entrance loggia 12 feet 3 inches by 74 feet 8
inches, and four staircases.
This building occupies a nearly level site under the Administration Building,
and has frontage on thi'ee streets. The site is a fill and the building rests on a
solid mat of reinforced concrete.
The features of the building are the entrance loggia and the three-story
arcaded patio, grass planted, upon which all the rooms open. This building has
a flagpole in front, and an octagonal open belfry of stucco and tile roof tops the
highest level of the roof in the rear of the building. This building accommo-
dates all grades from primary and intermediate (first and second floors) to
high school (third floor).
Cristobal School.The building is 56 feet by 166 feet 8 inches, two stories,
rectangular plan, contains 15 classrooms, 1 study room 21 feet by 42 feet, 1
laboratory, 1 principal's room, 1 teacher's room, 1 library, 1 lunch room, 6
toilets, 2 janitors' closets, 6 storage closets, and 1 dry closet; a total of 36 rooms,
besides a two-story front porch 9 feet 4 inches by 40 feet, an entrance lobby,
and an 11-foot wide central corridor running the length of the building, with
stairs and secondary entrances at each end.
This school is located on Colon Beach adjacent to the Colon Hospital, where it
is convenient for scholars from the New Cristobal town site. The feature of the
building is a front entrance portico of four poured concrete columns 24 feet
6 inches high. The building is crowned by a stucco and copper belfry. This
school is equipped to accommodate all grades from primary to high school.
Ancon School.The building is 75 feet S inches by 144 feet 10 inches, over-all
dimensions, two stories, H-shaped plan, contains 11 classrooms, 1 library, 1
teacher's room, 1 lunch room. 5 toilets, 2 janitors' closets, and 2 storage closets;
a total of 23 rooms, besides a vestibule and hall, and a 9-foot 3-inch wide
two-story porch running the length of the building, with stair and secondary
entrances at each end.
This school is situated well back on a terrace facing the Ancon Plaza.
The feature of the building is a two-story arcade, which faces the important
street at the back of the school. The building has a square stuccoed open
belfry with copper roof.
Pedro Miguel School.The building is 67 feet by 140 feet 8 inches, over-all
dimensions, one-story, U-shaped plan, contains 5 classrooms, 1 teacher's room,
4 toilets, 1 janitor's closet, and 1 storeroom, a total of 12 rooms, besides 208
linear feet of 10-foot wide porch.
This school is located on the top of a small hill not far from Pedro Miguel
railway station. It has entrances in the Spanish style and an open square
belfry with red tile roof.
Gatun School.This school is a duplicate of the Pedro Miguel School and is
similarly situated on a commanding site at Gatun.
Balboa Sanitary and Dental Building.
This building, 32 feet 6 inches by 62 feet, is located on the Prado opposite the
Balboa dispensary; it is constructed of reinforced concrete resting on a rein-
forced concrete mat. The roof is red Spanish tile.
The first floor has been designed for the housing of the district dentist and
the district sanitary inspector. The dental suite consists of a waiting room
for patients, an operating room, a dentist's laboratory, and a ladies' rest room.
For the sanitary inspector a workroom and an office have been provided. The
building contains also two rooms, to be used for consultation and examination,
in conjunction with the dispensary across the Prado.
On the second floor are located the living apartments of the sanitary inspector
and a mess and kitchen for the bachelor doctors of the district dispensary.
Pedro Miguel Dispensary.
Two stories, 76 feet 4 inches by 36 feet 10 inches. It contains, besides the
drug and doctors' rooms of the dispensary, rooms for the district dentist and
the district sanitary officer, and on the second story married quarters.
The building is of poured concrete exterior walls and floor slabs, with red
tile floors on the first floor; concrete block partitions, wooden floors on the
second floor, and a Spanish red tile roof.
Balboa Electrical Storehouse.
The building is 62 feet by 164 feet, three stories, averaging 14 feet from
floor to floor. It is planned to house all general electrical supplies requi-
sitioned on the Isthmus and is located under Sosa Hill, adjacent to the Balboa
substation, and facing the Administration Building. The interior is unbroken
by partitions except the office, dry room, tool room, and toilets on the ground
floor, and a workshop on the second floor. The stair and elevator shaft carry
up in the center of the large rooms, the latter being 8 feet 6 inches by 13 feet.
Floors, exterior walls, and columns (in two lower stories only) are reinforced
concrete. The roof has steel trusses and purlins, wood rafters, and sheathing
bearing Spanish red tile. On the ground floor rolling steel shutters open onto
a railroad platform and spur in the rear of the building, and make con-
venient the use of road vehicles in front.
Terico Island Barracks.
This building is 55 feet 6 inches by 167 feet 6 inches, and has a kitchen
and toilet wing 26 feet by 44 feet, all two stories high, with an unglazed green
Spanish tile roof. The structure is a subbarracks of the Coast Artillery, and is
built on a restricted area between the beach and railroad track. The first
floor level is 4 feet above maximum high tide, and a fill was necessary to
keep water from under the building. The rear half of the building rests
on rock, which falls away so rapidly that it was necessary to support the
seaward half with piling.
The exterior walls, stairs, beams, and columns throughout are of reinforced
concrete. Interior partitions are wood. The floors are wood, on wood joists,
except those in the kitchen, the toilet wing, and the 8-by-165-foot porch facing
the sea, which are concrete.
In addition to the usual accommodations for housing and feeding 150 en-
listed men there is a post exchange on the ground floor of the building.
Fort De Lesseps Coast Defense HeadquartersStorehouse and Barracks Building.
This building is L shaped, 195 feet 8 inches by 158 feet 10 inches, over-all
dimensions, both wings 68 feet 6 inches wide, with an extra wing in the rear
23 feet 6 inches by 26 feet, all two stories in height and similar in construction
to the Perico Island Barracks described above. An open concrete porch, 8
feet wide, with heavy square concrete columns running through both stories,
incloses the building. The interior wood partitions are generally of ship lap,
7 feet 6 inches high on one side of the studs; storerooms having space above to
the ceiling inclosed with heavy wire mesh. In the dry rooms the wood parti-
tions extend to the ceilings. The fireproof paint and oil rooms are built with
concrete floors, ceilings, and walls, and have iron fire doors. The building
contains the following rooms: 1 clothing storeroom, 1 table and kitchen utensils'
room, 1 clothing issue room, 1 fitting room, 1 general storeroom, 3 boat sup-
plies' rooms, 1 stationery room, 1 artillery engineer's storeroom, and 1 artillery
engineer's dry room, 1 ordnance storeroom, 1 ordnance dry room, 1 store and
packing room, 2 paint and oil rooms, 1 plumbing shop, 1 carpenter shop, 1
drafting and blue-printing room and platform, 1 dark room, 1 noncommissioned
officer's room, and gold and silver toilets; a total of 23 rooms on the first floor.
The second floor contains 2 commanding officers' rooms, 1 room for staff, 1
general clerk's room, 1 dispensary, 1 surgeon's room, 1 prophylactic room, 1
hospital squad room, 1 guardroom with 3 cells, 1 post exchange, 1 barber shop,
3 noncommissioned officers' rooms, 1 dormitory (62 beds), 1 dry room, 1 general
storeroom, 2 first sergeants' rooms, 1 mess sergeant's room, 1 mess, 1 kitchen, 1
pantry, 1 kitchen storage room, 1 cook's room, 1 tailor's room, 10 dry closets,
1 general toilet, 1 private room, 1 squad room, and 1 closet; a total of 39 rooms
on the second floor. The building is located at Fort De Lesseps on a level site
overlooking Colon Bay. It is equipped with fire hose outlets and reels, and the
second story porch is screened. The freight spur and dock borders one wing
of the building, adjacent to the larger store and packing rooms.
Fort Grant Band Barracks.
The building is 42 feet by 72 feet, two stories high, is situated at the end of
the line of type barracks, rear to the sea, and front porch facing the end of the
post headquarters building. The type of construction is similar to the Perico
Island Barracks in every respect except that the Spanish tile roof is red, in
harmony with the other buildings of the Fort Amador section of Fort Grant.
In addition to the mess, the first floor contains the band practice room and
office, and three rooms for storage of instruments and music. On the second
floor is the dormitory. The building accommodates 30 men.
Corozal Ordnance Magazine.
This building, 54 feet by 75 feet in plan, is included in the group of build-
ings comprising the Panama ordnance depot at Corozal. Unusual features were
presented in the design of a building of this character, due to the nature of the
material to be stored. The interior is divided on the first floor into two large
rooms for the storage of ammunition and other high explosives and one small
room for black powder; the second floor, to be used for the storage of inflam-
mable but nonexplosive materials, is not divided. The walls of the building
are 2 feet in thickness and heavily reinforced with old 70-pound rails. Interior
partitions are from 1 to 2 feet in thickness, reinforced in a similar manner.
The second-story walls are of ordinary reinforced concrete construction. To
provide against attacks from the air, two roofs, one of which also serves as the
second floor, are provided. The upper of these is an ordinary concrete slab
roof, while the lower is 2 feet in thickness with 70-pound rail reinforcement.
This lower false roof is designed to carry 6 feet of earth and gravel with
which the second floor may later be filled as additional protection from the
air. Entrances to the building were especially designed from the standpoint
of fire protection. They consist of outer fire doors and inner doors of heavy
steel-plate and angle construction. Proper ventilation is secured by means of
zigzag air ducts likewise protected by steel-plate doors and bars. These ducts